Shameful Glasgow RE teacher deregistered after touching female students at yoga retreat

A former Buddhist monk and religious education teacher has been struck off the register after being convicted of touching female students.

Rewatha Kamburawala, 47, was convicted in August 2018 of three counts of threatening or abusive behavior towards three women between April 2015 and March 2016.

One woman recounted how, while doing yoga at a retreat at the Glasgow Mindfulness Center, Kamburawala, from Sri Lanka, touched her body and pulled her towards him, the Daily check-in reports.

Sheriff Ian Fleming also found Kamburawala guilty of charges against two other students at the Maryhill center – including making sexual remarks and touching them – and was sentenced to 200 hours of unpaid labor.

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General Teaching Council Scotland (GTCS) watchdogs have since removed the former RE secondary school teacher from the register.

A report to the organization says Kamburawala has denied the allegations and said he was not unfit to work with children – despite his resignation.

But the watchdogs were unaffected by his lack of remorse and said there was no choice but to strike him off the conviction for “sexual misconduct” and that there was a “high probability” that a similar incident could occur again.

The report reads: “The committee considered that this was a misconduct of a level of seriousness fundamentally incompatible with being a teacher. There was no evidence of repair.

“There was no display of insight or remorse to remedy the conduct and mitigate the risk of it happening again.

“There was no evidence to support that the risk of recurrence was unlikely. In the absence of evidence to the contrary, the Panel considered that there was in fact a high risk that the conduct could recur. Over a period of one year, there were various incidents.

“The teacher had not remedied the conduct and it was not remediable as he did not admit the allegations. The Panel also took into account that the allegations concerned sexual misconduct.”

The report added that he had not engaged with the watchdog.

It read as follows: “The team considered his failure to engage as an aggravating circumstance.

“He did not demonstrate any insight and there were no extenuating circumstances. The Panel considered that the allegations constituted a pattern of behavior which affected the likelihood of recurrence as the case was not an isolated event, but there have been repeated conduct convictions both at the Mindfulness Center and elsewhere.

“The panel took into account the teacher’s current circumstances that he works at the Vihara Buddhist Center, but no location was provided by the teacher for this, so the panel assumed it was in Glasgow.

“The Panel had no information at its disposal as to whether Kamburawala was working as a teacher.

“As the Panel determined that the teacher is unfit to teach, in accordance with the terms of section 18 (2) (b) of the 2011 Public Service Reform Ordinance (General Council of Education for the ‘Scotland), he could only order that the teacher be removed from the Register. “

As head of the Buddhist temple in Scotland, Kamburawala has previously addressed the Scottish Parliament about the issues facing Sri Lanka and the reconstruction efforts there. His online LinkedIn profile currently lists him as a teacher at the Buddhist Vihara of Scotland.

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