Two schools facing losses over IT scam
TWO schools in the Royal Borough have been caught up in a national IT scam which could cost them thousands of pounds.
The council has confirmed they are providing support to the two schools involved, but have not named them. They have also sent out letters to all schools in the borough with advice.
The scam, which has embroiled schools around the country, has already landed one Slough school in thousands of pounds of debt and led to the suspension of three senior teachers.
The council is currently investigating how the schools became involved, which involves them signing up for IT equipment that was offered to them for free. However, they were actually duped into committing to mis-sold lease agreements. Cliff Turner, director of children's services at the Royal Borough, said: "We are aware of two schools in the Royal Borough which have been caught up in this national IT scam.
"We are investigating both incidents and we are in contact with other councils whose schools have also been targeted to ensure a consistent approach.
"While our investigations are ongoing it would not be appropriate to disclose the names of the two borough schools to avoid prejudicing the outcome." St Joseph's School, in Slough, has been slammed for suspending three members of staff by Frank Minal, the GMB union regional officer, but the Royal Borough is refusing to take action before a full investigation has been completed.
Mr Minal praised the schools involved and the Royal Borough for how they were handling the situation.
He said: "They are acting in a much more appropriate way and it is not right to start naming people and suspending teachers."
Councillor Eileen Quick, cabinet member for children's services, was unaware that schools in the borough had been caught up in the scam but said the borough would support them. She said: "If teachers or staff have been genuinely conned by scammers we would need to get the full information, but there would no question of blaming any members of staff."