A female deputy head teacher who abused a child aged under 13 has been banned from teaching for life.

Julie Morris, now 46, was working at St George’s Central Primary School in Tyldesley, near Wigan, where she was the ‘safeguarding lead’ when she carried out acts of ‘grave sexual depravity’ with her mechanic boyfriend.

A court heard she and David Morris, 52, had met on dating website Plenty of Fish in 2016 and their relationship quickly became ‘intensely sexual.’ 
It was gathered that around 175,000 pages of chat logs, analysed by Merseyside Police, revealed that the pair had sick conversations about their fantasies and sexually abusing children.

Between 2018 and 2021, both defendants, who were not married but have the same surname, abused a girl aged under 13, on numerous occasions. 

David Morris would often record the vile abuse on his mobile phone and the videos showed Julie Morris giggling as the abuse took place, the court heard.

After the court case concluded, a panel ruled that Morris’s offending was ‘deliberate and sustained’ and there is a ‘real risk’ of reoffending as they declared that she would not be able to return to the profession.

None of the criminal charges were linked to Morris’ employment or the school, however she did take photographs of pupils and send them to her partner. Police said the images were not indecent, or criminal in nature, and there was ‘no evidence that any of the children were harmed.’

 Their abuse of the girl was uncovered in September 2021 when police followed phone messages David Morris had shared with another person arrested, earlier that year, and officers raided his police raided home in Sandfield Road in the Eccleston area of St Helens. 

He was arrested and bailed with conditions. However the following day, police received information about Morris and his partner Julie Morris having committed sexual offences against a child and that the couple were planning to go on the run. 

They were tracked down to an address in Hindley, Wigan, and found the following day with a campervan packed with their belongings and 10,000 in cash.
Before passing sentence at Liverpool Crown Court in December 2021, Judge Andrew Menary said: ‘I see many cases involving the dreadful abuse of children, but every now and again we see cases, the circumstances of which are almost beyond belief. This is one of those cases. Sadly, it demonstrates that human depravity really knows no depths.’

Julie Morris, who admitted 18 sexual offences, including two counts of rape, and was jailed for 13 years and four months, with an extended four years on licence. David Morris, who admitted 34 offences including seven counts of rape, was jailed for 16 years with an extended four years on licence.

 Under current legislation, a woman can only commit the offence of rape as an accomplice. 

 Police said they held ‘multi-agency meetings’ with the local education authority Wigan Council and Julie Morris was sacked from her role in September 2021. Following her conviction and sentence, she was referred to the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA), who deals with cases of misconduct.

 A three-person panel was convened to hear her case on February 19 this year. At Julie Morris’ request, it was done without a public hearing and Julie Morris being present. They concluded that her actions were ‘fundamentally incompatible with her being a teacher.’ 

A report which details their findings, which has been published, says: ‘Her conduct ran counter to what should be at the very core of the practice of a teacher with a duty of care towards children.

The panel considered that Ms. Morris’ behaviour in committing these offences would undoubtedly affect public confidence in the teaching profession, particularly given the influence that teachers may have on pupils, parents, and others in the community. Her conduct ran counter to what should be at the very core of the practice of a teacher with a duty of care towards children.
‘The fact that Ms Morris was also the safeguarding lead at her school makes her offending all the more shocking in that, whilst the designated point of contact for welfare and safety concerns at the School, she herself was engaged in abusing a child, albeit not one at the school.’

 They added the offences were ‘were at the most serious end of the sexual offending spectrum in terms of gravity, and had the potential to cause lasting harm’ to the victim, whose identity is protected by reporting restrictions.

The report said Julie Morris had ‘engaged’ with the TRA and had ‘made full admissions expressing regret for her actions.’ She was also said to have had an ‘otherwise unblemished record.’
However they also found that her offending was ‘deliberate and sustained, and there was no evidence that she was acting under duress.’ They added there was a ‘real risk of Ms Morris repeating her offending.’

 Following their findings, a decision maker acting on behalf of the Secretary of State prohibited her from teaching indefinitely on February 27. It means she cannot teach in any school, sixth form college, youth accommodation or children’s home.
‘Furthermore, in view of the seriousness of the allegations found against her, I have decided that Ms Morris shall not be entitled to apply for restoration of her eligibility to teach’ he said.