Teacher told Jewish children, 10, they’d be ‘sent to the gas chambers’ for misbehaving

The supply teacher told pupils that didn’t finish work they would be ‘sent to the gas chambers like the Jews’ (Picture: Google)

A teacher told a class of primary school children that she would ‘ship them off to the gas chambers’ if they didn’t finish their work. When one of the 10-year-old pupils challenged her she said she was ‘joking’ before asking the children not to tell anyone. Staff at Newberries Primary School in Radlett, Hertfordshire, said the teacher was a supply and would not be returning to the school. Almost a third of people living in the commuter village of Radlett identify as Jewish – more than 2,200 people in total. The anti-Semitic comment was made to a class of 28 children, 11 who are Jewish, on Thursday. Parents at the school say the teacher said: ‘You better finish off your work quick, or I’ll ship you all off to the gas chambers.’ Pupils told their parents about the incident and word quickly circulated on school WhatsApp groups. Many parents contacted the school’s head teacher to say they would be withdrawing their children unless the staff member was sacked.

Newberries Primary School said its governors and leadership team are undertaking a full investigation

After an emergency meeting of the board of governors on Thursday night, the teacher was dismissed. Newberries said in a statement that the teacher in question was an agency worker and had no permanent employment contract with the school. One parent, who did not want to be named, told MailOnline: ‘To the credit of the school they made it clear they wanted to deal with the situation without delay. ‘They did not seek to dispute the suggestion that the teacher had made the reference to “gas chambers”. ‘The fact that the woman was sacked the following day says everything you need to know.’

In a statement, the school said: ‘We can confirm that last week we were made aware that an alleged racist comment had been made by an agency teacher working within the school. ‘We acted on this immediately and our governors and leadership team are undertaking a full investigation. ‘The agency teacher will not be returning.’ In a newsletter to parents the school said it was ‘doing all it could to embrace and celebrate diversity’. It said it would be inviting religious leaders from different faith groups in to speak to the children, as it had done in previous years. The newsletter said: ‘This year we are asking particularly for the focus to be on strengthening the important messages of religious tolerance and respect.’ Newberries is rated ‘good’ by Ofsted.