Two 14-year-old girls will face "serious" assault charges after a brutal bully attack on a classmate that left the girl with spinal injuries.
Fourteen-year-old Ardriana Kemp is recovering in hospital from surgery in which screws were inserted in her skull to keep her spine straight.
She was repeatedly punched by two girls at Flaxmere College in Hastings three weeks ago. The assault was filmed by another student on a cellphone.
Ardriana has been in and out of hospital for checks and scans since the attack.
Her mother Moana Hawkins said yesterday she had a "halo" head brace fixed to a collar around her neck.
"She's not coping too well at the moment," she said. "It's more frightening that she had that operation and had that thing screwed into her neck."
Ardriana will need an operation if the screws around her skull and below her ears don't heal her spine correctly.
Ms Hawkins said her daughter was coping before the operation, but had broken down after it.
Flaxmere police constable Greg Andrews said two 14-year-olds had been interviewed and referred to Youth Aid.
The case was being reviewed, but Mr Andrews expected the pair would appear in court.
Charges were being finalised but it was a "serious level of assault".
"It's one of those cases where schoolyard bullying has gone too far and this is the consequence of it."
Ms Hawkins said she wouldn't be at court when the girls appeared.
"They're trying to do a conference where we all come together but I don't want to see them yet."
She had seen film of the attack and was in shock at the severity of it and the fact someone had filmed it.
"It was bad enough to hear about it but to see it taped - I just broke down."
She was now focusing on her daughter's recovery.
"We're trying to cope. You can't be angry all the time. It's not good for her if we continue to be angry."
It was difficult to see her distressed in hospital.
"As soon as she came out of surgery we just broke down, me, her dad and grandparents, we just broke down having to see her like that."
The first she heard about the attack was when Ardriana texted her to say she had been "gang bashed".
Ms Hawkins said she was speaking publicly about what happened to draw attention to bullying at school.
"I wouldn't wish this on any other parent ... it's just a nightmare."
Ardriana hadn't wanted to see her friends while she had the halo attached to her, but her spirits were lifted with the messages of support she'd received, including many from people she didn't know.
"We've had a lot of community support. We want to thank everyone who sent gifts and messages. There's been plenty of people visit her in hospital and send things. We've had so much attention it's unbelievable."
Ms Hawkins said Ardriana would not return to Flaxmere College and she was taking her son out of the school as well.
Flaxmere College principal Louise Anaru told TV3 bullying was a problem the school was working on.