Tuesday, May 5, 2009

York school board stands down, reinstates bullied student

Source: Globe and Mail

A 15-year-old black belt who was suspended for breaking the nose of a classmate who racially abused him will return to school Tuesday after a sudden change of heart at the York Region board.

The reversal represents a dramatic victory for the Asian student, who was suspended a maximum 20 days last week. He had received a letter from the school board – later retracted – that said his principal recommended he be expelled from all schools in the region.

The 15-year-old will return to Keswick High School this morning with the suspension removed from his academic record and his upcoming expulsion hearing cancelled, the boy's father said Monday.

The turnabout began Monday when the student and his parents were invited to a hastily convened reconciliation session with his antagonist and that boy's parents. At that meeting, the white student apologized for directing a racial slur at the 15-year-old and for punching him in the mouth. The 15-year-old apologized for breaking his classmate's nose.

“He knew he was wrong so I was really glad to hear that,” the Korean-born student said. “I felt bad for breaking his nose so I apologized to him after that.”

The fight broke out April 21 during a gym class game of speedball. The white student called the 15-year-old a “fucking Chinese,” which led to pushing and shoving. After being struck in the mouth, the 15-year-old, a black belt in tae kwon do, struck back with his weaker left hand, which his father, a martial arts master, had taught him was a measure of last resort. Afterward, only the 15-year-old was charged by police. His fellow students, outraged by what they saw as injustice, walked out of school en masse last Monday to protest.


See? Was that so hard? This should have been done THAT DAY. No need for police or counsellors or hate-crime experts with nothing better to do. The principal of this school is an idiot. Take responsibilty of your own school and resolve this dispute in 10 minutes. These are 15-year old kids who are learning about life.

When we were kids, these things happened all the time. A kid would call another kid a name and then get his teeth bashed in. Principal would call parents and it would blow over.

These two kids have now learned more about each other and don't be surprised if they become good friends because of it.

Related: Teen brawl probed for racial taunts

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