A HAMPSHIRE headteacher who was sacked following a drink-driving conviction two years ago has been allowed to stay in the profession.

Roisin Philip was in charge of Hiltingbury Junior School in Hiltingbury Road, Chandler's Ford, when she was found guilty of driving with excess alcohol.

Southampton Magistrates' Court heard she was more than three-times the drink-drive limit.

Ms Philip was handed a 12-week jail sentence, suspended for one year, fined £750 and banned from driving for three years.

She was later suspended by the school governors and dismissed a few months later.

But the government has allowed her to remain in the profession following a hearing conducted by the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA).

A TRA report said: "Two members of the security team at Sainsbury's in Redcar Street, Southampton, witnessed a female who appeared to be ‘very drunk’ get into the driver’s seat of a blue Renault Clio.

"Police attended Ms Philip’s home address, where the car was seen to be parked 'in an odd position’."

The report said Ms Philip was found to have 125 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 microgrammes.

It added: "The offence was serious, particularly having regard to the volume of alcohol recorded.

"Ms Philip had a duty to act as a role model and the panel considered her actions fell far short of the standard of behaviour expected."

But the report said the panel also considered the difficulties she was said to be experiencing at the time.

Listing some of the other mitigating factors it added: "She was clearly a well-regarded and talented teacher and had successfully reached the role of headteacher within a relatively short period.

"Ms Philip has a clear understanding of her strengths and passions and her

future intentions should she return to the classroom."

The report said Ms Philip had an other unblemished record, having not been subject to any previous regulatory or disciplinary proceedings.

"Ms Philip showed clear insight into the reasons for, and the implications of, her actions. She was regretful and showed clear remorse.

"Ms Philip fully accepted that her actions amounted to a breach of the Teachers' Standards and spoke movingly about the effect of her actions on the school, its pupils, their families and the wider profession.

"She very clearly had feelings of shame and regret.

"Her conviction and very public fall from grace had the effect of forcing Ms Philip to confront the root causes of her behaviour.

"She had done so extremely positively and had worked incredibly hard, for which she deserves immense credit."