2 Sep 2009

Student suspended over classroom attack

5:37 pm on 2 September 2009

One student has been suspended following an attack on a pupil at Lynfield College in Auckland.

A group of boys, aged 14 to 16, invaded a classroom on Monday and attacked the student in front of a teacher and other students. One of them is believed to have been armed with a softball bat.

Lynfield College principal Steve Bovaird says one of the boys, who was a student at the school, led the group to the classroom where the assault took place and has since been suspended. Other suspensions may follow.

He says the rest of the group were not pupils of the school and the incident felt like a home invasion.

Mr Bovaird believes there were racial overtones to the attack. The boys were identified by security cameras at the school's main gate at 12.30pm and members of the Afghan community were involved.

The principal of nearby Mount Roskill Grammar has confirmed the school is investigating its options. It is believed a third school was also involved.

Eight youths have been referred to Police Youth Services, three for aggravated assault and unlawfully being on a property.

The attack is thought to have been sparked by messages posted on the social networking site Bebo.

Earlier this year, a teacher at Avondale College was badly wounded in a stabbing in his classroom. A student is facing charges for that assault.