Mum rallies community to end school bullies' 'terrorism'

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Ardriana Kemp. Photo / Supplied
Ardriana Kemp. Photo / Supplied

A Flaxmere mother fed up with school bullying has taken matters into her own hands after seeing "little action" from a school following an attack on a pupil that left her with a fractured spine.

Flaxmere College student Ardriana Kemp, 14, was beaten three weeks ago and is still in hospital. Her alleged assailants were teenage girls.

One school parent, who wanted to be known only as Magy, said she classified the attack as "terrorism".

Magy phoned school principal Louise Anaru on Tuesday but was not satisfied the college was taking a strong enough stance on student safety, and decided to hold an open meeting to discuss strategies to keep students safe.

She has posted flyers around the Flaxmere community calling for support for the meeting.

"My aim from this meeting is just to start making some change," she said.

"If left, these things can nest and flourish and carry on ... but we have got a voice and we can say something."

Magy declined Ms Anaru's invitation to attend a BBQ outside Ardriana's home on Tuesday night as a show of community support, saying "eating a sausage" is not a solution to the problem.

She said that when distributing flyers around local businesses in Flaxmere, she received a positive reaction from shop owners.

"They can see it [violence] happening outside their shops and they are willing to help.

"I am not sure what kind of response I will get, but I'm pretty confident that we have got a lot of concerned people out there. This is just another stigma against Flaxmere and I want to show we are not sitting back."

Magy's son, who attends Flaxmere College, will be a Year 12 pupil next year and aims to be dux.

He is involved in many aspects of the school as a member of a band, youth mentor, part of the leadership programme and keen sportsman, but if Magy doesn't see some major change, he won't be returning to the college.

"He is very disappointed about this. He has had his face pointing to the ground for the past few days," she said.

A statement issued by the Flaxmere College board of trustees said "relevant systems and procedures" were under review following the attack on Ardriana.

It also sent a clear message that there was no place for violence within schools or the wider community.

"We urge all parents of Flaxmere students to reinforce that ... at home as all our staff do here at college.

"It is our intention to spell out that message at the beginning of the school year as we have done in the past and will do so in future years." APN

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