Schools may leave pupils to brawl

The Dominion Post 04/09/2009

Teachers who feel unsafe breaking up fights may leave brawling pupils to it, as schools try to cope with a surge in incidents involving weapons. The warning from teachers’ unions comes after two incidents this week in which groups of pupils stormed schools with weapons and started fights. The latest incident involved a lunchtime school invasion between two Porirua secondary schools on Wednesday. About 20 pupils from Mana College, armed with a baseball bat and metal bar, went to Bishop Viard College and threatened pupils on the rugby field.

..Post Primary Teachers Association president Kate Gainsford wants Education Minister Anne Tolley, who is in the United States, to “step up and help”, saying the matter was already out of control. She was concerned teachers were being put at risk when fights broke out. “There’s a lot of tension out there in communities and that manifests itself in schools. “If it is getting to the stage where teachers are continually confronting this, then we would have to take advice from police about how to deal with that.”