'˜Race' attack on lad's first week at school

An alarmed parent has alleged a child was beaten by a group of youths in a racially-motivated attack at a secondary school.

Friday, 30th June 2017, 9:50 am
Updated Tuesday, 18th July 2017, 8:58 am
Atherton Community School

The 12-year-old boy from Eastern Europe was set on in a corridor by other pupils at Atherton Community School, the Wigan Post understands.

It has also been alleged that the boy was in his first few days at the school and was singled out as he still had a comparatively limited grasp of English.

The mum of another child picked to stay with the newcomer and help him settle in at the school came forward to speak about the incident and express her concerns.

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The incident is alleged to have taken place at the Hamilton Road free school (pictured)at around 2pm on Thursday, June 15.

The concerned parent, who asked not to be identified, said: “The new boy is in year seven and he barely speaks English at all, although the school is trying its best to support him.

“Several boys, including my child, were picked to show him round, tell him where things are and support him a bit.

“In the afternoon break on Thursday my child wasn’t with him for a few minutes and when he came back he had been beaten. Some were holding him while one was beating him.

“How can children be so aggressive or racist? I believe this is an act of racism. When you meet someone new on the street you don’t hit them straight away. My son was crying because he thought if he had been there nothing would have happened and it was his fault.

“I am scared by this because it is something that should never have happen, especially between children. I just want to know if the kids are safe.”

It is understood that the victim’s parents were brought to school following the incident but it is not known if the police have become involved.

A meeting with the parents of the boys involved in the beating is also thought to have taken place.

National education provider Chapel St, which runs Atherton Community School, did not directly acknowledge or address the incident when asked for comment but did provide a statement saying racist behaviour would not be tolerated.

A spokesman said: “All allegations of racist or intolerant behaviour are taken extremely seriously by the school and the Trust.

“Whenever there is such an allegation, or a fall-out between students, the circumstances are thoroughly investigated to ensure that fair, appropriate and proportionate action is taken.

“The senior leadership team at Atherton Community School work tirelessly to ensure the values of grace, love and fellowship are upheld at all times.”