Allegations of 'mystery students' on Newham College register

ITV News has spoken to a former lecturer at Newham College who has made more accusations about how it was run and those that ran it.

Newham College Credit: ITV News

Richard Shannon says on his attendance registers there were so-called 'ghost students', students who he never met. He also claimed the senior lecturer who made a homophobic rant about gay teachers, had no formal teaching qualifications.

The East London college is at the centre of a growing scandal in the wake of a homophobic rant by the Head of Performing Arts.

Mark Walcott Credit: YouTube

It was more than a year before Mark Walcott was finally suspended last month.

Drama lecturer Richard Shannon spent three years on the Stratford campus before quitting this Summer, appalled by Walcott's behaviour.

There was an atmosphere of intimidation and bullying - staff felt threatened by him. We were continually being disrupted by the way he intervened in our work.

As far as I'm aware he has no formal teaching qualifications and I'm pretty certain he had never run a performing arts department before.

We had a gay dance teacher who I know felt very, very isolated.

– Richard Shannon, Drama lecturer

The College Principal Denise Brown-Sackey is now on leave of absence after the board of governors ordered an investigation.

A dossier compiled by staff and former staff talks of homophobia, nepotism, corruption and mismanagement.

Part of the dossier Credit: ITV News

There are allegations of a cover up, dodgy exam results and now questions about mystery students whose names appeared on the register.

We invited Newham College to comment on these latest allegations:

As we have previously stated, these matters are currently being investigated. In light of that, we are not able to comment further at this time, and do not envisage it being appropriate to comment during the course of that independent investigation.

– Newham College