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Outrage follows Pair In Hiding

THE suspended 52-year-old teacher, whose teenage former student girlfriend says she wants to have his children, had just one thing to say yesterday.
"We are not talking to anyone. I've got nothing to say. Don't bother me again," said Gosford High School maths teacher Robert Drummond, who was in hiding with girlfriend Melanie, 17, after there were new calls for him to be sacked from the public school system.
Melaine's mother Wendy, of Bateau Bay on the Central Coast, vowed to continue her campaign to have Mr Drummond sacked after he was suspended in November, pending an Education Department investigation of his relationship with Melaine.
"It makes me sick to think of the two of them in bed and talking about having babies together,"she said.
"Drummond is four years older than Melanies father," she said.
She was unsure where her daughter was yesterday after the couple were forced to leave Melanie's sister's Ourimbah home, where they have been living together for the past few weeks while the sister was overseas.
Wendy is angry at the Education Department for failing to take a tougher stand against Mr Drummond after she claims her daughter told a department representative in November 2003 that the teacher was "the man that I love".
"Surely the alarm bells should have gone off then and I should have been told.
"By the time this all blew up it was too late," she said.
The relationship between the teacher and the student was common knowledge in the school, wendy said.
Mr Drummond left his estranged wife, Pamela, in early December.
Melanie was 16 and a promising student at the selective Gosford High School, when Wendy first heard about Mr Drummond in late 2003.
At about that time Melanie wrote an English assignment about an obsessive love between a student and an older teacher.
Melanie was counselled about the assignment and later suspended after the material was found on a computer website.
"I was terrified she would be expelled before she could complete her HSC," Wendy said yesterday.
The relationship between mother and daughter deteriorated this year to the point where Melanie left home to live with her older sister.
Wendy and Mrs Drummond spent several hours together on Christmas Day after Wendy in late November broke the news to Mrs Drummond that her husband was having an affair.
The Herald (29-12-2004)
Joanne McCarthy

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Teachers Career In Strife Over Relationship With Schoolgirl

A middle-aged teacher smitten by a 17-year-old girl faces official sanction - and possibly the end of his career - if a Department of Education investigation finds he made sexual overtures to her while she was at school.
Robert Drummond, 52, a mathematics teacher at Gosford High School, was removed from the school in November after concerns were raised about his relationship with a year 12 student, Melanie.
Melanie, who finished the HSC in November, has professed her love for the twice-married Mr Drummond and this week told a television station that nothing "inappropriate" occurred while she was at school. Mr Dmmmond has declined to comment.
Sexual relationships between teachers and students are banned under the department's code of conduct and by state law that prohibits relationships with students under the age of 18.
However, the code defines "sexual misconduct" - an offence resulting in disciplinary action up to dismissal - as including "inappropriate conversations of a sexual nature" and "personal correspondence (including electronic communication)" about an adult's sexual feelings for a young person.
Between 2001 and the end of 2004 11 public school teachers - out of a workforce of more than 50,000 - were sacked for having sex with students.
Mr Drummond has been working in an administrative position within the department since Gosford High, an academically selective school, notified authorities of his relationship with the schoolgirl. Mr Drummond cannot return to teaching in any school until the "circumstances surrounding" his relationship with Melanie are clarified, a departmental spokesman said.

The Sydney Morning Herald (2-1-2005)
Linda Doherty

Teacher, Student Moved House

A STUDENT involved in a relationship with a married teacher 35 years her senior has moved to Sydney.
Melanie, 17, has relocated with her lover, 52-year-old Robert Drummond, her former maths teacher at Gosford High School, after being offered a place at Sydney University — to study teaching.
The pair are now understood to have set up home in the Dulwich Hill area.
The relationship with the twice-married father-of-five has caused a rift between Melanie and her mother Wendy.
But Melanie did send her mother a text saying she had a UAI score over 89 per cent.
As a result, she is now due to start a Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of Arts degree.
In an interview earlier this month, Melanie denied they were lovers while she was a pupil.
"It began when I left school." she said. "Nothing ever began in the classroom.
"He didn't prey on me, or target me, we just fell in love."
An investigation by the Education Department is under way.
A series of internet diaries was uncovered by The Daily Telegraph in which she revealed her infatuation with her teacher.
One entry read: "Like school? No. I hate the setting, the stupid rules and everything except the lovely people — and wait for it— Robert!"
Last August, she wrote; "I'm thinking of inviting a certain love of my life over.
"But, then again, it is short notice and I promised my sister I'd wait until I left school."
Last night, her mother said she was surprised her daughter had moved from the Central Coast to the city.
"She always said she didn't like the hustle and hustle of Sydney." she said, adding she had been kept in the dark about her daughter's new address.
"We don't talk much. I miss the closeness we used to have with each other but I only want what is best for her."

The Dialy Telegraph (22-1-2005)
Shoba Rao

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