Pulling hair and pulling knives: Schoolgirls caught on film
CONFRONTING vision of young students being savagely beaten in a shocking display of schoolyard violence has been splashed across social media.
The videos, posted to Instagram pages last week, showed students from numerous schools across Townsville trading blows in school bathrooms, common areas, ovals and even outside of school.
The pages have since been taken down by the social media network after intervention by the Queensland Education Department.
Mum-of-six Germaine Clemments said she felt sick and "hopeless" when she saw her daughter, 16, Mikayla being savagely beaten in a video.
"I was heartbroken for her. She doesn't go out of her way to harm anybody," the mum said.
"She's been having sleepless nights because she doesn't want to have bad dreams. I had to take her into school to finish her exams but she's not keen on going back next year."
Ms Clemments claims it wasn't the first incident that had impacted her daughters and said her youngest had been bullied.
Townsville Police Chief Superintendent Kev Guteridge said local police were continuously seeing instances of fighting in schools and blasted those who shared the vision on social media.
"I think it's an incredibly sad indictment on modern society that we have the ability to create that as some form of entertainment," he said.
"More importantly, we've got for some morbid reason people sitting there prepared to share it or expand on it, rather than denounce it and say it this is not the kind of society we want to live in.
"We've got people that sit back and watch it and have a joke and have a laugh because they're not involved, ultimately it just shows a complete lack of respect for what societal expectations should be."
A Department of Education spokeswoman confirmed they had intervened to have the Instagram accounts showing fights between Townsville students shut down.
She said students and families were encouraged to report any incidents of inappropriate behaviour to their principal to ensure students can be supported and their concerns carefully investigated.
"The responsibility for preventing and addressing the misuse of technology, including its use
to bully, harass or harm others, is one that we all share in the community," the spokeswoman said.
"The impact of recording and distributing inappropriate content stretches beyond those directly involved, impacting their friends, families and many silent observers.
"Any situation that threatens the safety and wellbeing of students, staff or others in the school community is treated extremely seriously, and dealt with as a matter of priority."