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School not informing parents that a convicted rapist is attending their child's school
The rapist is another minor aged student **Possible trigger**

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70 replies to this topic

#1 SylviaPlath

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:10 PM

I came across this article in the Australian (dated 9th Janaury).

You can read the full article here: Rape secrecy 'puts children at risk'

This topic is very close to home for me, I am surprised by my own reaction, as I am of the view that the convicted should be allowed to attend school (provided that he is monitored the entire time he is there) and that his identity (and therefore past) should not be revealed to students of parents in the school.

I am curious to know what others think. What would you do if your child was at this school?

PARENTS will not be told that an 11-year-old boy was raped at a regional South Australian school, as the mother of the victim says children are being put at risk by the government's continued silence.

The now-convicted rapist, who was an older student, has been transferred to a new school, but teachers and parents have not been told of his conviction.

The mother of the primary school student, whose attacker was convicted of rape and given a suspended sentence in 2011, was shocked to learn late last year that parents and staff at the school where the assault occurred remained in the dark.

This is despite the state government vowing to ensure transparency with school communities in instances of serious sexual assaults following an audit, which resulted in three schools being belatedly advised of serious assaults.

The revelation is the latest twist in the scandal engulfing the state Labor government over its handling of sex abuse cases in public schools, which is the subject of an inquiry with royal commission powers.

In an email dated December 19, 2012, and obtained by The Australian, the education department's director of regional programs Anne Kibble advises the boy's mother that the school community would not be told of the incident because it involved a student-on-student assault.

"(His) case is not one that is being considered for informing the community, the media accounts are referring to cases of adult to child incidents," the email said.

The mother said parents should be alarmed by the government's decision and warns that students are at risk.

"How would parents feel knowing that their son or daughter is sitting next to a convicted rapist in a school and not being told about it?" she said.

"How are teachers going to keep an eye on him?"

The mother also said she was concerned that there may be other victims at the school where her son was raped who were yet to come forward.

#2 SylviaPlath

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:12 PM

Also, in another article I found, it referred to the convicted student/rapist was aged 13 at the time of the incident.

#3 skylark

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:16 PM

I am unable to have any kind of reasoned rational response, I cannot imagine how the parents of the child who was assaulted must feel knowing the risk is there for other children.

#4 Expelliarmus

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:22 PM

I think it's fair enough that this child's privacy is maintained. Schooling for him will be well monitored. I can't say any more than that, however.

#5 EsmeLennox

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:25 PM

Teaching staff wouldn't know because the perpetrator is also a child. He or she would have the right to suppression of identity, just as any other juvenile offender would. It is a very tough situation though, it would perhaps be pertinent for at least the administration of the school to be told, possibly they have been. There would be some sort of policy in place, but the department would be playing their cards close to their chest, the media is probably not that reliable in terms of what the real situation is. I have had occasion to teach juvenile offenders, but I have never been told what their offence(s) was, nor am I allowed to ask. Sometimes you do find out. I personally prefer not to know, knowing can sometimes make it difficult to teach them.

I have also taught adult prisoners, and while their crimes are not shared with you, you tend to find out what they are convicted of, sometimes you already know because they have been in the media. It is very difficult to put your feelings aside when you are teaching someone who murdered their wife and children, I really do prefer not to know.

Edited by Jemstar, 24 January 2013 - 09:29 PM.

#6 EsmeLennox

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:35 PM

Just because teaching staff are not aware it does of mean that there aren't procedures and policy in place. There could be a school police liaison, there could be school psychologist. We don't know the full situation.

And you wouldn't know if there are convicted juvenile offended at your daughter's school.

Edited by Jemstar, 24 January 2013 - 09:36 PM.

#7 Expelliarmus

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:37 PM

As I said I can't say anything else such as the way in which he would be monitored. I can only say that he would be. I work in this system FluffyOscar. It's not for me to say exactly what steps, protocols and measures would have been taken.

#8 RealityBites

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:38 PM

I am usually liberal to a fault but I wouldn't be in this case. He should not be around children.

#9 ubermum

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:42 PM

I think it is important that the young offender continue on at school. Not attending school would place him at risk at being a lifetime offender. It is important to also remember that in all likelihood, this child (he was 13 when he offended) abused another as a way of processing his own abuse. That is not condoning or excusing the behaviour, but rather reminding us all that this is a very damaged child. However, I think that the staff at the school should be aware of the situation. Having staff who are in the dark does place other students at risk. I do not think that parents need to be made aware because then there would be no point to him attending, but staff yes. I don't see why staff could not be told after signing a confidentiality agreement however I do concede that it could make their dealings with him difficult. It's a tough one.

#10 TeaTimeTreat

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:48 PM

If the staff have not all been told and he is not constantly monitored what is to stop him raping another 11 year old at his new school, and then being moved, and doing it again etc.

I think distance education would be more appropriate for a rapist.

Just the knowledge that this happens make me want to home school.

#11 Mitis angelam

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:49 PM

QUOTE (RealityBites @ 24/01/2013, 10:38 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I am usually liberal to a fault but I wouldn't be in this case. He should not be around children.

Should he be home schooled in isolation?

We do not know the circumstances of his offence.  But it seems to me that every effort ought to be made to offer the chance of rehabilitation.

#12 Dionysus

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:50 PM

Our public education system is based on the fundamental premise that EVERY child deserves an education.  Public school educators are duty-bound to support EVERY child to reach their full potential.  

As a public school educator, I am proud for that to be my moral purpose.

I will back up what Howdo and Jemstar are trying to say.

Just because teachers and parents are unaware of the history, one should not presume that everybody at the school is unaware of the history and that checks and procedures have not been put into place.

The family of the victim has my full sympathy

#13 Expelliarmus

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:50 PM

It would be that not ALL staff would be informed. Not all members of staff have interactions with all students. Those staff for whom the monitoring is their job would know. It would be a mistake to assume that it's definitely the type of school with which you are familiar. There are many types of Education Department placements.

Edited by howdo, 24 January 2013 - 09:53 PM.

#14 RealityBites

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:56 PM

QUOTE (Ange Vert @ 24/01/2013, 10:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Should he be home schooled in isolation?

We do not know the circumstances of his offence.  But it seems to me that every effort ought to be made to offer the chance of rehabilitation.

IMO, yes, along with copious amounts of therapy.

He raped a younger boy and 13yo is quite old enough to face the consequences, and to be a subsequent danger to other children.

Just reminds me of Jamie Bulger's killers. Murder is heinous. Rape is heinous. I'm feeling all Old Testament about this one, can't imagine how the victim's family must feel.

#15 **Xena**

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:59 PM

I don't think parents should know. I also agree that the child needs to be schooled and placed in an environment of rehabilitation so as to help stop the cycle now. If parents were told then the child risks becoming a complete outcast of society and going on to re-offend.

We don't know the details of the case or anything.

#16 mummanazz

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:59 PM

I wish I could say I would be okay with him being at my child's school- I respect and admire the pp's that can say they think he deserves the chance to be there.....

But I just can't.

Similar to what another person has said, I usually can see the bigger picture in debates and tend to empathise with both sides a bit, but just can't with this.

#17 bakesgirls

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:59 PM

QUOTE (Ange Vert @ 24/01/2013, 10:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Should he be home schooled in isolation?

We do not know the circumstances of his offence.  But it seems to me that every effort ought to be made to offer the chance of rehabilitation.

I agree with this. When push comes to shove, he is still a minor and legally entitled to anonymity in regards to his crime.

I like to think, that if I had a son, who had perpetrated this horrendous crime, he would not be tarred with the criminal brush for the rest of his life. That he could try to get an education, which is also his right. He should be able to have the chance at rehabilitation, which won't happen if he is outed to all and sundry and driven away from schools.

I really can't imagine that he would be let loose to do as he wished. I like to think that there were steps in place to monitor his behaviour and actions.

ETA- Can you imagine how much 'vigilante justice' would be pitted against this person if what he did was widely known? He's a child. Some people will conveniently forget that.

Edited by bakesgirls, 24 January 2013 - 10:08 PM.

#18 EsmeLennox

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:59 PM

Social isolation could well be the very worst thing you could do to this child in terms of him reoffending in the future.

I agree with Howdo, we do not even know what sort of school he will be attending. There are varied placements for students with difficult situations.

#19 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:07 PM

Surely they wouldn't be letting him back in school if they didn't think in some way he was able to be rehabilitated or if he was still a threat.

I don't know how I feel. I don't think I'd like it much but then I feel for the boy. What makes a child turn into a rapist? I loathe rapists and paedophiles. He is a kid though. Is he just pure evil or was he harmed too? There is no justification for what he did, but he's a kid. If there's a chance he can change and be saved then that needs to happen. His poor victim though. It's all so sad and ****ed up.

I thought there was something about sex offenders that said they weren't allowed to be around children though?

#20 TeaTimeTreat

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:09 PM

If he is in a special type of school where he will never have the opportunity to be alone with another student and rape them then fine.

But in normal high school with unsupecting year 7's and without constant supervision? No way is that ok, the psychological trauma of rape is huge and if do gooders and the education dept give this 13 year old rapist the opportunity to inflict that on another 11 year old then I hope they will stump up the cash for the years of therapy that child will need.

Or will it still be about the rights of the rapist and helping him.

#21 niggles

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:10 PM

My memory may be sketchy as I heard this reported a while back on ABC radio but as I recall one of the reasons the boys identity cannot be revealed is that by doing that it would make it too easy to identify the victim. It's not legal to do anything which could reasonably identify this child.

#22 bakesgirls

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:10 PM

QUOTE (Sunnycat @ 24/01/2013, 11:07 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I thought there was something about sex offenders that said they weren't allowed to be around children though?

I think that goes out the window when the offender is but a child themselves.

#23 BetteBoop

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:11 PM

An 11-year-old boy was raped in the toilet block of a school in country South Australia by an older student in December 2010.

I wonder if the school can provide support to the offender while keeping other kids safe from him? If he re-offends, I'm sure the parents of any future victim won't be placated by being told every child deserves an education.

It's like saying every person deserves freedom. Yes they do, unless they're a danger to others. The right to safety for the kids at that school should trump the offender's rights to education.

If I was a parent at that school, I would want a detailed explanation of how the school could guarantee my child was at no risk at all.

#24 auntpriscilla

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:11 PM


Edited by Willoughby Chase, 01 February 2013 - 12:11 PM.

#25 CallMeFeral

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:26 PM

I think it's ridiculous.

In all situations, the ideal is to give the offender the best chance to rehabilitate etc - but this has to be weighed against the risks to the population - and the life sentence that you would be giving their next victim.

TBH in most sexual offence sentencing, this is ineffectively weighted - an offender gets a few years, does it again, and ruins the entire life of their next victim. Sometimes it's an escalation thing, and after a few under-penalised offences, the person escalates to more horrific offences, killings, etc.

I don't think this case is any different. If there were a world where we could fill a school with humanoid robots so this kid could attempt a normal childhood, then that would be great. It's not that I'm saying he should be punished more.

But I DO think that his next victim, whoever they are, is more deserving of our protection, than he is. And I hate that perpetrators needs are always considered so much over their subsequent victim's right to be protected.

The teachers should know, and he should be supervised at all times and not alone in the presence of children, particularly younger ones.

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