Teacher at Prince George's old £20,000 school pleads guilty to child sex crimes

10 November 2022, 09:04 | Updated: 5 April 2023, 08:55

Matthew Smith (L) was a teacher at St Thomas's School
Matthew Smith (L) was a teacher atThomas's School. Picture: LinkedIn/Getty

By Kit Heren

A teacher at the former school of Prince George and Prince Charlotte has admitted multiple child sex crimes, according to reports.

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Matthew Smith, hired by Thomas's Battersea in September as deputy head of pastoral care - meaning he helped look after children's welfare - admitted charges of sexual abuse relating to the making and distribution of indecent images of children at Westminster Magistrates' Court on Wednesday.

He also pleaded guilty to inciting the sexual exploitation of children.

The charges do not relate to children at the £20,000-a-year south-west London school. Prince George and Princess Charlotte left Thomas's in April - before Smith, 34, was hired.

The school told parents that Smith, from Southwark in south London, had been fired immediately after they learned of the charges.

The principals had only found out he was being investigated for the child sex crimes on Monday.

Ben Thomas and Tobyn Thomas told parents: "I do not for a minute underestimate the shocking and deeply concerning nature of this news.

"Our focus right now is on our pupils, parents and colleagues," they added in the statement, seen by Mail Online.

Princess Charlotte arriving for her first day of school
Princess Charlotte arriving for her first day of school. Picture: Getty

They added that staff will tell children that Smith has been fired but will not go into more detail.

"We will need to work together to respond to children's questions in an age-appropriate way," they said.

"If you are unsure of what to say to your child, and would like further guidance, please do not hesitate to contact any of the following members of our leadership team."

Smith was assistant head at the British School in Kathmandu in Nepal, for five years before joining Thomas's.

 Thomas's school
Thomas's school. Picture: Getty

He also taught at the prestigious St Paul's School in London, and holds degrees from Oxford and Cambridge, according to his LinkedIn profile.

He will be sentenced at Southwark Crown Court in January.

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Prince George began at the highly-selective Thomas's in 2017 and was joined two years later by his sister. They moved to Lambrook school near Ascot this year.

Kensington Palace said the move was to give the young royals "as normal a family life as possible" outside central London.

A spokesperson for the school said: "We have been shocked and distressed to learn of these charges.  The safety and wellbeing of our pupils is, and always will be, our top priority.

"As there are ongoing criminal proceedings, it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time other than to say that there is no suggestion that the offences relate to Mr Smith’s employment at Thomas’s or to any current or former pupils of the school. 

"As soon as the school learned of the charges, Mr Smith’s employment at the school, which commenced in September this year, was terminated with immediate effect.”