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Bullying at Astor College, Dover, highlighted on Facebook group

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A new campaign group is fighting to stop pupil on pupil bullying at a secondary school.

Members are working with Astor College for the Arts in Dover to end the scourge, although some have told of cases in other schools.

There have been complaints of bullying Generic picture: RADAR AI
There have been complaints of bullying Generic picture: RADAR AI

The private Facebook group called School bullying, which our reporter was permitted to join, tells harrowing anecdotes of pupils being picked on.

It was set up just last month and members include present parents and pupils and past pupils.

One contributor said bullies tried pushing a girl in front of a bus and taking her life-saving medication.

A dad said his daughter was a kicked and punched, as had happened before, and young thugs tried to push her friend down the stairs.

Another tells how a girl was once filmed while being physically assaulted by a group. Her family have since moved her to another school.

"Let's hope this spreads further to stamp this out." Anti-bullying group member

A woman told how a child was attacked after leaving the school premises by a group of 30 to 60 pupils who chased her and her cousin around Tower Hamlets.

It was also said on the Facebook page that a girl was sexually assaulted on the way home by another pupil.

One contributor observed that a lot of incidents were happening off-site and suggested police should be asked to step up patrols during home time.

One of the page administrators told contributors: "Amazing all you brave ones that have come forward. Let's hope this spreads even further to stamp this out not just in Astor but all schools. Enough is enough."

Group leaders have regularly had meetings about the problem with head teacher Lee Kane.

Lee Kane, head teacher at Astor College for the Arts.Picture: Gary Browne
Lee Kane, head teacher at Astor College for the Arts.Picture: Gary Browne

He told Kent Online: "I was made aware of the formation of the parent group related to bullying issues across the district secondary schools and I met with the parents associated with the site whose children attend Astor.

"We discussed with them and their child the issues and shared views and thoughts.

"The group administrator asked for an interview later this term which I have agreed to that will discuss in more depth how we can all work together on the issue of social media, bullying and partnership with parents.

"We also intend to look at ways we can promote awareness of the support available to assist the wellbeing of pupils in secondary schools.

"Like all schools, behaviour and bullying incidents are dealt with when they are known about. "

Astor College for the Arts.Picture: Alan Langley
Astor College for the Arts.Picture: Alan Langley

"For those pupils and parents who sadly experience issues, we offer opportunities to resolve and address and through working together we can reach positive resolution in most instances."

A police spokesman said: "Kent Police are investigating two assaults reported to have taken place in Astor Avenue, Dover.

"The first incident is reported to have taken place shortly after 3pm on Monday, April 26, when a teenage girl was reportedly punched by another girl.

"The second incident is reported to have taken place at around 3.10pm on Wednesday, April 28, when another girl was reportedly assaulted.

"Officers are making initial enquiries into the circumstances surrounding the incidents, which are not at this stage being treated as connected."

To ensure protection of the identities of present pupils at the school, Kent Online is not naming those who have written posts on School bullying, including adults.

Read more: All the latest news from Dover

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