A man got fired up when he witnessed his son being bullied at school and it resulted in him assaulting a student.

Shane Anthony Solway was sentenced to 40 hours of community work by Judge Dugald Matheson in Whanganui District Court on Tuesday.

Solway pleaded guilty to and was convicted of one charge of common assault.

Duty solicitor Jamie Waugh said that Solway's offending had occurred in the heat of the moment.

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"The offending came about after his son who has special needs was being bullied by a group of children at school," Waugh said.

"He regrets his behaviour, he knows it's entirely unacceptable to grab a child that age the way he did.

"Unfortunately, the bullying continues, him and his partner have been trying to meet with the school to try to resolve matters, but there hasn't been a lot of luck."

Judge Matheson accepted that Solway was taking steps to resolve the matter and said it was unlikely he would offend in the same manner again.

"I do need to simply send a message by imposing a punitive element, but it will be the minimum that I can, simply to record that this is behaviour that is not acceptable in the community.

"I am going to impose 40 hours of community work."