Mum of bullied student says son knew martial arts but resisted urge to retaliate
Although he was being bullied, her son resisted the urge to hit back at his tormentor, said the mother of one of the bullied Shuqun Secondary School students.
In an interview with Shin Min Daily News, the mother, who was not named, said that despite having learnt martial arts for three years, her son resisted using physical force to retaliate.
Martial arts was a form of exercise for her son and that is why he did not use it to fight back, said the mother.
She lodged a police report and wants a fuller explanation from the Ministry of Education (MOE) about what happened and the action taken.
"Our son told us that when he was being hit, he had reached his boiling point. He had to clench his fists to resist the urge to fight back," she said.
The school's principal said on Thursday in a statement:
"We have taken to task students who have behaved inappropriately and take disciplinary actions. (sic)
"Given their youth and remorsefulness, we counsel them to ensure they learn and make amends."
The bullying incident was caught on camera and went viral after it was uploaded online.
The incident took place last Friday afternoon in a classroom. An adjunct teacher was present at the time.
In the video, a male student from the school is seen hitting two others on their heads repeatedly.
Both victims kept their heads bowed and did not retaliate. Another boy is seen dancing on a table.
The mother told Shin Min that for the past two years of school, her son had always been excited to go to school, but once he entered Secondary 3, he became withdrawn.
She said: "After the incident came to light, we realised that our son was being bullied very often, but he tried to appear strong and hide his troubles at school.
"Our son kept it a secret because be didn't want his family to worry and he was afraid that the situation would get worse.
"So he chose to endure the bullying, which the bully took advantage of."
The mother also said that the school principal informed them on Tuesday that the bully has been transferred to another class.
She said: "We discovered that our son was being bullied only when the video went viral and we took him to make a police report that same day."
Police confirmed that a report has been lodged and that investigations are ongoing.
The mother wants MOE to conduct a thorough investigation and hopes that there will be an avenue for victims of bullies to turn to for help.
She said that she and her husband have gone to the school to talk to the principal and have also approached their Member of Parliament.
She hopes to get a proper explanation about the incident and added: "Fortunately, although he was bullied, our son's grades weren't affected."
Our son kept it a secret because be didn't want his family to worry and he was afraid that the situation would get worse. So he chose to endure the bullying, which the bully took advantage of.
- The mother of one of the boys who were bullied
There was an adjunct teacher present that day who didn't do anything to stop it. This raises a lot of questions about the criteria for hiring such teachers. The school needs to give an explanation.
- Mother of bullied student
Winnie (not her real name) resorted to self-mutilation and had suicidal thoughts when she became a victim of cyberbullying.
Her primary school friends turned against her in secondary school when she made strides to become a netball star, TNP reported then.
They called her "stupid and retarded" whenever she updated her Facebook page or posted photographs.
After Winnie's tutor noticed that she had lost weight and had developed red welts on her upper arms in 2011, Winnie's mother, talked to her daughter and found out that she had cut herself.
Winnie sought psychiatric help.
Jason (not his real name) was verbally abused by bullies every day of his four years of secondary school life because of his weight.
The teen, who spoke to The New Paper while a social media campaign to raise awareness of bullying was then underway, said he would "cry on the spot" every time he heard the words "you're fat".By 2013, when he was in Secondary 4, he was tormented by about 15 bullies.
He even contemplated suicide, but remained silent about his plight.
He has completed secondary school, but Jason says he will still remember the bullying.