'Ban initiations' call at suicide school
Mark Maclagan, a sixth-form pupil, hanged himself from a tree at his home in Camberley, Surrey, in January. An inquest was told that bullying might have been a factor in his death.
The report, by Dr Roger Morgan, chief inspector for Oxfordshire's social services, found that bullying at the pounds 10,000-a-year boys' boarding school was no worse than at other schools.
But it notes that bullying is serious and frequent for 1 in 20 of the school's 400-plus pupils, with some senior boys using punishments excessively. The worst form of physical bullying, according to Dr Morgan, was punching to give 'dead arms' or 'dead legs'.
Senior pupils, says the report, which was instigated by Berkshire's area child-protection committee, unlike those in most independent boarding schools, are more concerned with disciplining younger children than with their welfare. Some created punishments: one involved a run, sometimes at 6.30am, which caused some pupils to vomit.
The report's 22 recommendations include better staff supervision of new pupils to stop 'initiation' ceremonies, such as a cold bath or shower.
Dr Morgan found that 4.9 per cent of pupils claimed to be bullied 'often or most of the time', compared with an average of 6.1 per cent in other schools.
The inquiry received some evidence of occasional incidents of types of bullying: 'bog-washing', where boys' heads were stuck down lavatories, and 'divisional scrubs', in which pupils were covered in boot polish and then showered.
Most parents were happy with the school, although some were critical of its 'macho' image and some gave 'disturbing accounts of bullying which they described their sons as having received'. Others were clear that bullying and teasing were a good preparation for later life.
A majority supported the headmaster's efforts to reduce militarism and ancient traditions by abolishing, for example, fagging by junior pupils.
- 1 School kitchen manager 'fired from Colorado school for giving hungry students free lunches'
- 2 California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
- 5 Charles Kennedy 'had better judgement drunk than many sober politicians' says Ian Hislop
California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
Amber Peat: Body found in search for missing 13-year-old who left house after argument with her parents
Alton Towers crash: Four guests seriously injured as Smiler ride carriages collide
Charles Kennedy dead: A guy once asked the Lib Dem leader who his favourite Muppet was and his letter response was wonderful
Gay teenager 'forced to have sex with his own mother' to 'cure' his homosexuality, campaigners in India say
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Church of England 'one generation away from extinction' after dramatic loss of followers
£17500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We currently require an experie...
£50000 - £100000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Partner Manager is required ...
£45000 - £100000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Regional Sales Manager is re...
£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The company provides IT support...