A JUDGE has criticised Bradford College over the alleged way it treated a black teacher after he complained of being racially abused by pupils.

The complaints were made by Roger Adrien, 51, who worked at Bradford College’s Pupil Referral Unit, where he taught 14 to 16-year-old pupils who had been excluded from mainstream schools primarily because of behavioural issues.

Some of the pupils came from dysfunctional families and were prone to exhibit verbal abuse, threats and cause damage to the school, a Leeds Employment Tribunal was told.

Mr Adrien - of mixed race of African-Caribbean origin and white British - described himself as black and had 20 years’ teaching experience. He made legal claims of race discrimination, harassment and victimisation against the college, complaining he was called racist and offensive names by some pupils and alleged one student “squared up” to him.

The hearing took place in May and June, but tribunal judge Neil Maidment has just released his decision - that Mr Adrien has been successful with some of his legal claims.

Mr Maidment said in his report that the respondents failed to deal with the racist conduct complained of by Mr Adrien, with the result he continued to work in a hostile environment.

He had reported concerns for his safety from pupils in possession of dangerous weapons.

He said: “The respondents did not uphold his grievances about the way in which the college had responded to his complaints.”

He also complained of victimisation arising out of his treatment by the school’s head Louise Mollicone. The judge said that after complaints about his treatment, Mr Adrien was effectively demoted from the role of acting deputy in September 2016 and excluded from the teachers’ office by having his desk moved.

During the tribunal the judge also referred to allegations about dealing with students’ qualifications and an alleged “false” claim that the claimant had failed to register pupils for a course.

Mr Maidment said around the same time Mr Adrien was “deliberately omitted” to be informed that he was able to apply for the substantive post of deputy head teacher.

Mr Adrien was allegedly not provided with targets needed to meet his extended probationary period until November 1, 2016, “thereby setting him up to fail”, continued Mr Maidment, and he was eventually referred for disciplinary proceedings in relation to alleged “unprofessional conduct.” The judge alleged that a report was “deliberately misleading” and led to Mr Adrien’s dismissal.

Other complaints by Mr Adrien, that he suffered direct discrimination because of race and complaints of harassment relating to race, were dismissed by the judge.

A decision about an award to Mr Adrien will be made at a later date.

A college spokesman said: “The college is very disappointed by the judgment. It relates to isolated incidents in a unit away from the main buildings that supports a very small number of students with particularly challenging behaviours and who have been excluded from mainstream schools.

“The college is satisfied that the tribunal rejected the complaint of direct discrimination and that a number of complaints of harassment were also dismissed.

“However, the college is not complacent and appropriate actions are now being taken. It also apologises to Mr Adrien for the distress caused. The college prides itself on its welcoming and inclusive environment, has a zero-tolerance approach to racism of any kind and will be ensuring all necessary lessons are learnt so that all staff and students enjoy their experience at Bradford College.

“The college has a dedicated Inclusion and Diversity officer who in the last academic year delivered more the 110 activities promoting equality and diversity to more than 5,500 students.”