School knife rumour quashed
EDUCATION Queensland has quashed claims that a Maryborough school student was this week threatened with a knife during a schoolyard spat.
Rumours have been rife within the Aldridge High community since the incident on Wednesday afternoon, in which a weapon of some description was involved.
Numerous students claimed they saw a male student, believed to be in either Year 9 or 10, chase a fellow student with a small knife after a heated altercation.
However, the Department of Education’s regional director, Greg Peach, has played down the incident which, he says, was started over a food fight.
“The student was eating his lunch when he became involved in an argument with another student who was throwing fruit.
“The student was holding a combination spoon and knife eating utensil during the argument.
“However, the blade was not extended and he did not make contact with any students.
“No threat to use the utensil against other students was made and no one was injured.”
Mr Peach said the student surrendered the utensil willingly to staff and had been consequently disciplined under the school’s responsible behaviour plan for bringing the utensil to school.
“Students are not allowed to bring knives or other implements that could be considered weapons to school.”
The department refused to confirm whether the student had been suspended.
Wednesday’s incident may add to the growing debate about the need for tighter, US-style security checks of students at school.
According to police figures, the number of knife attacks in Qld schools, colleges and universities has risen 35 per cent in one year.
Authorities recorded 46 knife-related offences and of these 23 were assaults, 18 life-endangering acts, three sexual offences and two armed robberies.
The figures were released this month following the stabbing death of 12-year-old Brisbane student Elliot Fletcher at high school.
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