A TEACHER who arranged to meet up and perform a sex act with a boy he thought was 15 while he was at work has been banned from teaching.

Oliver Ciaravella was the acting head of science at Honywood School in Coggeshall where he logged onto Grindr and spoke to a profile.

Almost immediately, Ciaravella, 41, asked the other person – who was actually not a child but a vigilante- their age. The profile replied they were 15.

But Ciaravella continued the chat, lying about his own age and sending naked pictures.

He swiftly arranged to meet the ‘youngster’ on the same day - September 20 2017 - and discussed a sex act, with Ciaravella even asking why the ‘boy’ was not in school.

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But when he arrived at the meeting place in Braintree, police were waiting to arrest him.

The disgraced teacher was suspended from work the next day on September 21, 2017, having worked there since 2010.

He initially denied the charges, but eventually admitted to arrange or facilitate a child sexual offence shortly before a scheduled trial at Chelmsford Crown Court.

He was told to complete the Horizon programme for sex offenders, 20 rehabilitation days and 180 hours of unpaid work and £500 costs.

Ciaravella was also made subject of sexual harm prevention order for five years and was put on the Sex Offenders’ Register.

Ciaravella subsequently resigned from his job and ceased working for the school on May 26, 2019.

Following a professional conduct panel meeting, Ciaravella was found to have breached a series of Teachers’ Standards.

They included a breach of public trust, treating pupils with dignity, having regard for their wellbeing and having proper and professional regard for the ethos of the school in which they teach.

Alan Meyrick, who had the panel’s deciding say, banned Ciaravella from teaching in any school, sixth form college, relevant youth accommodation or children’s home in England.

Mr Meyrick said: “I have had to consider the public has a high expectation of professional standards of all teachers and the public might regard a failure to impose a prohibition order as a failure to uphold those high standards.

“In view of the seriousness of the allegations found proved against him, I have decided Oliver Ciaravella shall not be entitled to apply for restoration of his eligibility to teach.”