13 Jun 2011

Student's death prompts college to review ball

11:30 pm on 13 June 2011

King's College in Auckland will undertake a review of its school ball following the death of a student.

David Gaynor, 17, the son of business commentator Brian Gaynor, died after an incident at Greenlane Bridge on the southern motorway on Saturday night.

David Gaynor earlier attended the school ball at Eden Park, where ambulance officers had to treat a girl who was heavily intoxicated.

He is the fourth King's College student to die since February last year, including James Webster, who died after excessive drinking at a party.

Headmaster Bradley Fenner says the school has improved its alcohol and drug education programmes. He says each death has been different and people should not make assumptions.

Mr Fenner told Morning Report that binge-drinking is a society problem and should be dealt within the community.

He says Saturday's ball was alcohol-free and all students were checked when they arrived to make sure they were in an appropriate condition, but the school will undertake a critical review.

Pupils returning to the college on Monday have been offered counselling and support.

Prime Minister John Key says the school has been responsible in its management of the ball.

Mr Key's son attends King's College and says as a parent, he is satisfied that those who attended the ball were safe and the school has handled the latest tragedy well.

The Chief Coroner is to consider whether to conduct an inquest into the deaths. However, a member of the board of governors Bishop Ross Bay, says he does not think there needs to be a broad inquiry.