Last week outside Waiuku College in Auckland, New Zealand, tensions between different student factions finally crescendoed, when one teenaged student set upon another viciously ‘bottling’ him around the head.

The perpetrator of shocking violence more typical of street gang members than boys still in short pants was one of a group of 3 attackers. A large gorey slash to the victims face required stitching up and will likely result in permanent disfigurement.

Both the College and the injured students parents advised Police of the incident, which is alleged to have occured in response to racial tensions rising over a period of time.

Students and friends of the victim say they were not adequately reassured by the Colleges response in the wake of the violent attack. The school merely imposed a 2 day suspension on the Offenders.

A group of boys had been bullying others for a considerable time according to students who say that as school authorities have little power ‘you just learn to keep your head down’. 

Having real concerns about the lax punishment meted out and naturally the schools composition later in the week, some students troubled to raised their concerns with school authorities. However these students did not feel they were heard. 

So on Thursday several students staged a walk out of the school assembly and then formed a picket line outside of the gates. The key issues of the rally were a perception that school violence is tolerated and that discipline at Waiuku is a laughing matter.

The protest gathered momentum and before long around 250 kids walked out of class and joined the protest. Even the head boy and girl got in on it.

Teachers thoroughly stunned by the civil rights demonstration called the local Constabulary for the second time that week as they were clearly ill equipped to manage the situation.

The children protesting about a lack of any hardline disciplin have now had a truancy incident added to their records and may face further punishment as yet unspecified – a prospect that likely does not have them quaking in their boots.

Students say they are tired of the ‘PC’ (politically correct) way things are done now and that they blame the older generation for messing with the social fabric. ‘It’s us who are now suffering the consequences’ said one.

On Friday a letter was sent out to the Parents and Caregivers of Waiuku College students.
It said the school is working hard to help the students involved in the original bullying incident to ‘resolve their differences’.

The letter notes that a ‘minority of students have exposed all our other students to unwarranted worry and disruption’. It is unclear from the letter which students are being referred to in this statement – the attackers or the protesters.

Many parents of those involved in the protest have expressed support for their childrens actions. Some even say they are very proud their childen saw fit to make a stand about such an important issue.

‘These kids could teach the parole board a thing or two, their actions should be lauded and will hopefully have ramifications throughout New Zealand culture – why didn’t the school call the cops on the bullies earlier anyway’ asks one parent.

Police are likely to refer the bullys to their youth aid service for intervention. And the School has advised that the 2 day suspension for the attackers was only an interim measure until it’s Board of Governors meets to consider the case more fully.

Be Sociable, Share!