Topic: Education

South Ak community uneasy following school brawl

By Mānia Clarke
  • Auckland

The community surrounding a South Auckland school is feeling uneasy following a large fight between students at Rosehill College, allegedly involving a gang member.

One neighbouring resident is afraid to be identified and fearful for her whānau.

“It's made me scared in myself and also scared for my own whānau here.  I just want a transfer now,” she says, “I don't need this.”

An anonymous source told Te Kāea that a fight between junior and senior students began in the school grounds at lunchtime yesterday and escalated to 30 students. 

It resulted in a police lockdown for students and the community.

“At about quarter past three yesterday afternoon my daughter walked across to the kura to ask if we can have speed bumps,” says the resident, “And we got told by the local police we had to come back into our whare and stay inside.”

Yesterday's incident stemmed from a fight between students on Wednesday.

A gang-related adult related to one of the students allegedly went to the school yesterday to confront the students involved.

“He's trespassed from the school and as I say we have spoken to him and we're taking that matter very seriously as well,” says Inspector Tony Wakelin.

“We can't have kids, students, parents intimidated by anyone and that includes gang members.”

Security guards are now patrolling inside the school to ensure safety of staff and students.

Police also have a presence as an extra precautionary measure.  However, there's growing concern among the community.

“Why didn't they do that before this all happened?  Apparently, this is not the first time this has happened,” says the resident.

The Ministry of Education has offered security assistance for next week and trauma support to students and staff.

Police continue to investigate the incidents.