AN investigation into the conduct of trustees at a special needs school in the wake of claims of sexual abuse could be re-opened, the Daily Echo can reveal.

The Charity Commission is looking again at its inquiry into Stanbridge Earls School near Romsey that previously found no fault in trustees’ decisions.

But questions have been raised about the findings of its report, which investigated whether trustees had managed the school charity properly in the wake of the allegations, prompting the move.

Following allegations the school was criticised for excluding the pupil who had made a rape claim and was subjected to multiple inspections.

The Charity Commission, which oversees charitable trusts, conducted its own probe into how the trustees handled the overall administration, governance and management of the charity.

It included trustees’ response to issues raised by Ofsted and the Department for Education (DfE).

A report published last December concluded that trustees had “made reasonable decisions” in managing the school charity while under intense scrutiny.

The Commission’s report then stated:

“The decisions taken by the trustee body, with specific regard to the tribunal action and subsequent engagement with the DfE and Ofsted were all within the range of reasonable decisions open to them at the relevant time.”

But now issues have been raised about the report’s content, the basis of its findings and its conclusions.

The Commission has removed the report from its website while it reviews the case and considers its next step.

As reported the school closed last year after failing to get enough children to sign up for classes for the new school year, making it financially unviable.

This came after a Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal in January 2013 found that the £39,000-a-year school had discriminated against a girl and that staff members failed to tell the youngster’s parents that she had complained of pain in an intimate part of her body.

An Ofsted inspection the next month also uncovered serious care failings.

An action plan drawn up by the school was rejected by the DfE.

Prosecutors later ruled there was insufficient evidence to bring charges for claims of sexual abuse of pupils.

They considered the original allegation made by the parents of a pupil and separate claims from four other pupils against 10 individual students.

It also investigated allegations of perverting the course of justice against two teachers.

A Charity Commission spokesman said: “Issues have been raised with the Commission by a third party about the content of the Statement of Results of Inquiry on Stanbridge Earls School Trust and the basis for the findings and conclusions drawn in it.

“The Commission has opened an assessment case to review the basis of and evidence for those claims to determine whether any adjustments to the report are required or should new information be provided, whether it will be necessary to re-open the inquiry.

“The report has been temporarily removed whilst these issues are assessed.”