High School principal resigns amid claims of bullying

April 16, 2018

The principal of St. Patrick’s High School in Keady has announced her resignation, claiming to be the victim of a prolonged campaign of harassment and bullying.

Pat McGuckian is to step down at the end of the current academic year.

Speaking to the Irish News, she said her decision “is due entirely to a vicious campaign of bullying and harassment which has been ongoing for the last 16 months and coming from particular sources”. 

Revealing that the intimidation has affected her health, and that of family members, Ms McGuckian said she feels she has “no choice” but to resign as head of the school “before I was truly ready to go”.

“The PSNI are investigating the matter as a hate crime and I am taking legal advice.  The full truth about what has been happening will emerge in due course,” she said.

“I have been supported throughout this time by the excellent board of governors and together we have done our utmost to ensure that the pupils’ education and welfare have been unaffected. I am confident that this will continue to be the case. St Patrick’s continues to be an innovative and progressive school with a dedicated and professional staff.”

The school is currently being investigated over allegations of exam cheating centred on GCSE maths and English papers in the summer of 2017.  It’s believed this probe is almost concluded and Ms McGuckin says she expects the outcome to exonerate her of any wrongdoing.