Sacked teacher Enoch Burke driven from school by Garda car – The Irish Times

Enoch Burke left Wilson Hospital School in a garda car after turning up on Tuesday morning despite being sacked as a teacher last Friday following a disciplinary process.

Mr Burke was dropped off at school near Multifarnham in Co Westmeath by his father Sean just after 8.30am.

At around 12.40pm the teacher left the school in the back of an unmarked Garda vehicle and was taken to Mullingar Garda Station. He left the station before 2 p.m. and was picked up by his father. The Garda Siochana have been contacted for comment on the matter.

The school, which reopened on Tuesday after being closed on Monday for scheduled staff training, was also contacted for comment on Mr Burke’s attendance following his dismissal.

The teacher was informed of the decision on Friday, which followed a chaotic disciplinary hearing held at a Mullingar hotel last week. According to the school disciplinary procedure, he has the right to appeal the outcome within 10 working days.

The High Court proceedings regarding the dispute between him and the school are ongoing.

Mr. Burke last week failed in his attempts to get a High Court injunction to prevent the disciplinary hearing from taking place. He claimed that the process had “gone irretrievably wrong”. He was suspended and placed on paid administrative leave pending the process, which was initiated based on a report prepared last August by then-principal Niamh McShane.

It related to Mr. Burke’s objection in an email to a direction to teachers last May to address a transitioning student by their first name and use the pronouns “they/them” and his public opposition to that direction at a school event last June. He states that such a direction is a violation of his religious beliefs.

Mr. Burke was jailed in early September for contempt of court orders for continuing to attend school despite court orders prohibiting him from doing so. He was released indefinitely on December 21 last, after 108 days without clearing his contempt.

After he attended school again on January 5 after the Christmas holidays, the school applied for an order fining Mr Burke or temporarily confiscating his property. About that request, to which Mr. Burke strongly opposed, it will be decided later.

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