Parent's fear over Wakefield school fights being filmed and shared among pupils
Organised fights between students at a Wakefield school are being recorded and shared online, according to a worried parent who says little is being done to tackle the problem.
Footage of several violent clashes have been sent to the Express showing pupils from Outwood Grange trading punches, scrapping and being egged on by fellow students.
One even appears to take place in the middle of the school yard. Parent Rachael Smith, who says her own son has been involved, says the fights are filmed and shared across social media platforms such as Instagram or WhatsApp.
While she admits that fights between schoolboys is not a new issue, the fact they are being filmed is simply adding fuel to the fire.
She said: "Every time a video comes out it seems they then go an do another one, they all see it and it spurs them on to hit someone.
"They're all talking about the next fight. "
There's been at least 25 of these videos over the last year and some are quite brutal.
"Some of the children will go too far and end up seriously injuring or killing someone."
Mrs Smith says she has approached the Potovens Lane school and sent emails but says no steps have been taken to address the issue.
Out of frustration, she set up an online petition which has already attracted more than 140 signatures.
But she says many parents are simply unaware of the problem, and that the school has done little to inform them.
"I've had one parent who saw their son on one of the videos and was shocked - they are not being told about this going on," she added.
"The school knows this is going on and should be taking phones off the pupils. As parents we have to take responsibility, but the teachers need to as well.
In response to two of the videos shown to the school, in which the youngsters are clearly wearing Outwood Grange uniforms, Brian Kelly, principal at the school, said: “I am aware of these two incidents that happened around two months ago and these were dealt with firmly at the time.
"The academy has a clear mobile phone policy that does not allow phones in the academy and requires parents to collect these if students are found with them.
"We are grateful when parents bring concerns to our attention, the ability to deal with these immediately allows us to continue to deliver outstanding outcomes."
Mrs Smith's petition can be found at Change.org by searching for Outwood Grange on the site.