THE Bishop-designate of Leeds, the Rt Revd Nick Baines, has led
tributes to Anne Maguire, the teacher stabbed to death in her Leeds
classroom by a pupil on Monday.
Bishop Baines, who will become the first diocesan bishop of the
new diocese of West Yorkshire & the Dales in June, said that
the killing had shocked him deeply. "My prayers are for the family
of Anne Maguire, for the staff and students at the school, and all
affected by this tragedy."
Mrs Maguire, a popular teacher of Spanish and RE at the Roman
Catholic Corpus Christi College, was stabbed several times in front
of her stunned students. She was taken to hospital, but later
A 15-year-old pupil has been arrested and charged with her
murder. He was remanded in custody after a brief hearing at Leeds
Youth Court on Thursday.
The school lies in the parish of St Philip's, Osmondthorpe. The
Priest-in-Charge, the Revd Karen Marshall, paid tribute to Mrs
"It is with profound sadness and shock that we hear of the
untimely death of Anne Maguire. Our thoughts and prayers are with
her family, the school, and the boy concerned. We pay tribute to
her great contribution to the lives of young people here in East
Leeds, and pray for strength and courage for the whole community to
face the challenges inevitably brought about by this terrible
Chief Superintendent Paul Money from West Yorkshire Police said
that the stabbing was an isolated incident, and no other teachers
or pupils had been threatened. He also said that schools in Leeds
were generally "very safe places".
One pupil told the BBC that Mrs Maguire had been an inspiring
teacher. "She was amazing; she was the best at everything, and a
really lovely lady." Another said: "She was a brilliant teacher as
well - just last week I went in for a reference for another college
and she was saying how she misses us all . . . and now she's not
here. It's just really sad."
Corpus Christi Catholic College teaches 944 students between the
ages of 11 and 16. On its website, the head teacher, Steve Mort,
describes the college as having a "strong Christian ethos", and
says that the school day always began with prayer.
Mgr John Wilson, apostolic administrator from the RC diocese of
Leeds, said that the diocese was providing pastoral care to anyone
from the school who needed it. "The news that a teacher at Corpus
Christi Catholic College in Leeds has been stabbed by a pupil is
both shocking and tragic.
"On behalf of the Catholic Church in the diocese of Leeds, I
extend our sincere sympathy especially to the victim's familyand to
the College community. Catholic Care, the diocesan caring agency,
is deploying a team of professionals to the College to provide
The Pope's ambassador to the UK, Archbishop Antonio Mennini, has
written to the RC diocese of Leeds to express his condolences and
the "spiritual closeness" of the Pope.
The local C of E diocesan director of education, Richard Noake,
described it as an isolated incident, "a tragic one, but it is
isolated, and I do not particularly feel it representative of what
schools are like today, even in the most challenging contexts.
"I feel quite strongly that the shock and the sadness of this
event is genuine, and this is not necessarily an opportunity for
people to say schools are terrible places to be."
The Priest-in-Charge of the neighbouring parish, St Wilfrid's,
Halton, the Revd Darren Moore, spoke of strong ecumenical links.
"We shall be keeping all at Corpus Christi and the parish of
Blessed John Henry Newman in our thoughts and prayers."
Separately, the man convicted of the killing of head teacher
Philip Lawrence outside his school gates in 1995 has been
recommended for release.
Learco Chindamo, now 33, was just 15-years-old when he stabbed
Mr Lawrence outside St George's School in Maida Vale, north-west
A spokesman for the Ministry of Justice said the independent
Parole Board had made the decision, but that Mr Chindamo would
remain on licence and liable for recall to prison if certain
conditions are broken for the rest of his life.