The General Teaching Council for Scotland

General Teaching Council for Scotland Fitness to Teach Outcome

Panel Meeting - Unchallenged Removal Recommendation

17 July 2019

 Teacher Karen Howat
 Registration Number 017105
 Registration category Primary
 Panel John Kilpatrick, Irene Kitson and Arthur Stewart
 Legal Assessor Julie McKinlay
 Servicing Officer Kirsty McIntosh
 Teacher's representative N/A

Any reference in this decision to:

  • "GTCS" means the General Teaching Council for Scotland
  • the "Panel" means the Fitness to Teach Panel considering the case
  • the "Rules" (and any related expression) means the GTCS Fitness to Teach and Appeals Rules 2012 or refers to a provision (or provisions) within them
  • the “Standards” means the GTCS Standards for Registration 2012;
  • the “SFR” means the GTCS Standard for Full Registration;
  • the “SPR” means the GTCS Standard for Provisional Registration; and
  • the “Register” means the GTCS register of teachers.


GTCS received a recommendation from Glasgow City Council that the Teacher’s registration be removed because it is alleged that she lacks professional competence.  In the Case Overview Report submitted with the recommendation, it is alleged that the Teacher lacks professional competence with reference to her failure to meet and maintain the sections of the Standards as indicated by an ‘N’ in the following table, standards met are indicated by a ‘Y’ and ‘X’ indicates no judgement:

1  Professional Values and Personal Commitment SPR & SFR
 1.  Social Justice  Y
 1.2  Integrity  Y
 1.3  Trust and Respect  Y
 1.4  Professional Commitment  Y
 2  Professional Knowledge and Understanding  SFR
 2.1  Curriculum  
 2.1.1  Have knowledge and understanding of the nature of the curriculum and its development.  Y
 2.1.2  Have knowledge and understanding of the relevant area(s) of pre-school, primary or secondary curriculum.  Y
 2.1.3  Have knowledge and understanding of planning coherent and progressive teaching programmes.  N

 Have knowledge and understanding of context for learning to fulfil their responsibilities in literacy, numeracy, health and wellbeing and  interdisciplinary learning.

 2.1.5  Have knowledge and understanding of the principles of assessment, recording and reporting.  N
 2.2  Education Systems and Professional Responsibilities  
 2.2.1  Have knowledge and understanding of the principal features of the education system, educational policy and practice.  Y
 2.2.2  Have knowledge and understanding of the schools and learning communities in which they teach and their own professional responsibilities within them.  Y
 2.3    Y
 2.3.1  Have knowledge and understanding of relevant educational principles and pedagogical theories to inform professional practices.  Y
 2.3.2  Have knowledge and understanding of the importance of research and engagement in professional enquiry  Y
 3  Professional Skills and Abilities  SFR
 3.1  Teaching and Learning  
 3.1.1  Plan coherent, progressive and stimulating teaching programmes which match learners’ needs and abilities.  N
 3.1.2  Communicate effectively and interact productively with learners, individually and collectively.  Y
 3.1.3  Employ a range of teaching strategies and resources to meet the needs and abilities of learners.  N
 3.1.4  Have high expectations of all learners.  N 
 3.1.5  Work effectively in partnership in order to promote learning and wellbeing.  Y
 3.2 Classroom Organisation and Management
 3.2.1  Create a safe, caring and purposeful learning environment.  N
 3.2.2  Develop positive relationships and positive behaviour strategies.  N
 3.3  Pupil Assessment  
 3.3.1  Use assessment, recording and reporting as an integral part of the teaching process to support and enhance learning.  N
 3.4.1  Read and critically engage with professional literature, educational research and policy.  Y
 3.4.2  Engage in reflective practice to develop and advance career-long professional learning and expertise.  Y

The Case Overview Report explained to the Teacher why the local authority formed this view.

The Teacher stated to GTCS in writing that she did not wish to challenge the recommendation made. 


The Panel carefully considered all of the written evidence provided with the Case Overview Report, which was:

  1. Supporting report of [redacted], Head Teacher
  2. Supporting report of [redacted], Depute Head Teacher
  3. Supporting report of [redacted], Depute Head Teacher
  4. June 2017 letter
  5. Observed reading lesson, dated May 2017
  6. Learning Conversation
  7. Literacy Learning Rounds
  8. Tracking Action Plan
  9. Observed Reading Lesson, dated September 2017
  10. Example of unsuitable resources
  11. Notes in prep for meeting dated 30 October 2017
  12. Parental complaint, dated November 2017
  13. Learning and Teaching Assessment, dated September/November 2017
  14. SLT supporting pupil ineffective resources
  15. LI and SC not matching
  16. Tracking, dated November 2017
  17. Implementing LNCT 11 Stage 1
  18. Support Meetings and visits, dated November/December 2017
  19. Occupational Health Reports
  20. Writing conversations
  21. Notes from meetings, dated December 2017
  22. Evaluation of LNCT11, dated November 2017
  23. Letter, dated April 2018
  24. Maths assessment and learning conversations
  25. Term 3 forward planning
  26. Term 4 forward planning
  27. Forward Planning Science Feedback
  28. Writing
  29. Observed lessons, dated May/June 2018
  30. Tracking June and September 2018
  31. Maths assessment
  32. Progress Report
  33. Incidents in Primary 6
  34. Concerns about relationships
  35. Stage 1 review and tracking document
  36. Parental complaint
  37. Support Meetings with [redacted]
  38. Mentor meetings with [redacted]
  39. Forward planning
  40. Observation and feedback: [redacted], [redacted] and [redacted]

The Panel considered all the above material. The Panel was mindful that the Teacher had had sight of all of this material and had confirmed that she did not wish to challenge the recommendation. 

The Panel saw no reason to doubt that the local authority’s recommendation for removal was made in good faith and it accepted as credible all of the material that had been submitted.  Against this background, the Panel did not consider it necessary for a hearing to be arranged and, as provided for by rules 3.1.1 and 3.8, it decided to direct that the recommendation be accepted and ordered that the Teacher’s name be removed from the Register accordingly. 

Once the Teacher’s name has been removed from the Register, her name remains so removed unless and until an application for re-registration is made by her and a Fitness to Teach Panel directs that the application be granted. 

The Panel directed that the Teacher should be prohibited from making an application for re-registration for a period of 2 years from the date of this decision as it considered this to be an appropriate and proportionate period of time with reference to the content of the recommendation that had been made and accepted.


In accordance with Article 24 of the Public Services Reform (General Teaching Council for Scotland) Order 2011, the Teacher has the right to appeal to the Court of Session against the decision within 28 days of the date of service of the written notice.

The Teacher’s name will remain on the Register until the appeal period has expired and any appeal lodged within that period has been determined.