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School sued after pupil bullied on YouTube

TT/The Local/rm · 4 Nov 2011, 07:47

Published: 04 Nov 2011 07:47 GMT+01:00

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The student at a school in Simrishamn, in southern Sweden, had to endure constant physical and verbal abuse from other students at his school.

Apart from being kicked and punched, the boy also had objects thrown at him and his clothes ruined on more than one occasion.

At one point, one of the incidents was filmed and put on YouTube.

The school made attempts to combat the bullying but failed to put a stop to the abuse.

However, according to the Swedish Child-and-Student Ombudsman (Barn- och elevombudet, BEO), the school didn’t do enough. The Ombudsman has therefore demanded that the local authority pay damages to the boy.

The claim of 160,000 kronor ($24,300) is one of the largest in a bullying case in Sweden.

Christer Grankvist, a deputy chairman in the local authority’s child–and education-board, told news agency TT that what has happened is unfortunate and that the municipality has a zero-tolerance policy for bullying.

“The whole process has meant that the school has reviewed their policies and taken step to ensure this will not happen again,” he told TT.

Story continues below…

The school has until December 19th to show a plan for dealing with bullying in the future and to decide what to do about the claim.

“My guess is that they will pay,” Grankvist told TT.

TT/The Local/rm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

08:57 November 4, 2011 by Da Goat
there is that word again!

some thing else is unfortunate, is anyone fortunate there in sverige!
10:14 November 4, 2011 by Keith #5083
I am fortunate to live in Sweden which, though not perfect, certainly struggles to be so. But if we must nit-pick then I would respectfully mention that some thing is actually one word in the sentence that you have used, i.e. something. Unfortunately you did not write it this way.....
10:36 November 4, 2011 by Johno
But he is right, the word crops up over and over. Something went wrong, it was unfortunate. Standard response, respectfully.
11:04 November 4, 2011 by London_Jim
What about some sort of reprimand for the parents of the children who were doing the bullying?
12:31 November 4, 2011 by Grokh
why werent the kids expelled ? why werent both the kids and the parents held responsible for what was going on ?

Once a kid threw paper at my younger brother i chased the kid down and and yelled so hard at his face the kid almost peed his pants, im sure for long he gave a second thought before doing that again.

if good education, and school reprehension doesnt do anything and these kids have no consequences maybe a punch to their face everytime they bully someone will show them its not worth it -_-x
13:04 November 4, 2011 by just a question
If teachers don't do more against bullying is because if they do, they will be bullied by the students and/or the parents.
14:59 November 4, 2011 by Opinionfool
The title of this item is misleading. It suggests that the child was bullied when using youTube rather than the evidence of bullying at the school was uploaded there. Over in the US there's a similar youTube video of a father beating his daughter for using the Internet to acquire copyright material. He is a judge, she has mobility issues caused by cerebral palsy.

Those two youTube videos are a true record of what happened but not everything there is. An English TV company was recently criticised for including footage of Gaddafi's troops training IRA terrorists ... except it wasn't it was footage from a well-known computer age. Caution needs to be exercised and care taken with evidential videos uploaded to the Internet. Not everything is what it appears to be at first sight.
16:45 November 4, 2011 by cattie
The culture of low accountability begins early in Sweden. There are few consequences for bullying, teachers and paid schoolyard monitors rarely intervene. tyvärr...

When my son misbehaved, I asked what consequences he would get, a mark or missing recess... the principal said, "Oh, we do not do THAT here"


They gave him a little talk with no consequence.

When several children years older than my son hit him on the playground, I witnessed it an reported it to the principal. She replied was "We do not allow that." When I asked the consequences, they replied a vague "we will talk with them." Later, when I spoke about this situation incredulously, to my Swedish in-laws replied . tyvärr... that is how all the schools are.

Apparently children learning appropriate behavior is a matter of fortune or luck. "Unfortunately..." No one is disciplining children and unfortunately bullying is common. Discipline is teaching. Maybe Swedish teachers should watch a few episodes of Supernanny.
17:17 November 4, 2011 by Opinionfool

"Swedish teachers should watch a few episodes of Supernanny."

Presumably to see how a real bully works.
17:45 November 4, 2011 by Archie1954
There are no bad children just bad parents.
20:34 November 4, 2011 by james_g
@Archie1954 - I think you're being a tad ingenuous there! There may be few, or even VERY few, intrinsically 'bad' children, but to say none is to be deluded!
14:24 November 8, 2011 by tadchem
I guess the school has deeper pockets than the parents of the bullies. It is a shame that a bureaucracy has to use civil litigation to generate revenue.
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