Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Suspended or stood down for assault

Stuff has a story about the growing number of students who are physically assaulting other pupils and school teachers - 7,200 in 2005 up from 6,500 the previous year.

New Zealand Primary Principals' Federation Pat Newman said schools were concerned that children were showing severe behaviour problems at younger ages.

"What alarms us most is the small percentage of young children who are showing extreme levels of violence rather than low-level abuse such as hitting or throwing," he said.

"We know what is needed. It is not rocket science. It's just there are more dysfunctional children in society not being cared for by their own families," he said.

Here are some earlier figures;

2000 3233
2001 3320
2002 3294
2003 3872

The breakdown between assaults on other pupils and assaults on staff shows overwhelmingly it is other pupils bearing the brunt. In 2003 only 7 percent of the assaults were on staff. 18 percent of the total cases were at Primary.

A conversation with somebody who works in a nearby decile 2 community revealed that many kids are now stood down and simply stay home, despite a legal requirement to be attending school. The police know they are about and try to keep an eye on them.

According to Pat Newman the answer is, "If we are to help these violent children while keeping others safe, we need to have the money to employ people to look after them while they get help."

1 comment:

Brian Smaller said...

It happens everywhere. My son is at a private boys school and he got into a fight a few weeks back. I think it is the testosterone starting to kick in.