Parents have lashed out at a Victorian school in Australia after male students were forced to stand in assembly and apologise for the sexual assaults caused by their gender.
Brauer College in the south-western Victorian town of Warrnambool held an assembly on March 25, 2021, where boys were told to stand up in a symbolic gesture of apology to girls and women.
As reported by Dailymail.co.uk, Levi, a 12-year-old student at the school who had only attended the college from the start of 2021, said he was forced to get up in front of his new classmates and apologise, many of whom he hadn’t met. Levi told media,
They told us to stand up and turn to a girl in our class and say sorry. I don’t think it’s okay to be sexually assaulted. I felt a bit under pressure to stand up and if I didn’t I felt like I was a bad person.
Another student named Vini said there were several girls in the assembly hall that began crying because they had been revealed in front of everyone as having been victims. He said,
I had girls behind me crying because they had basically been exposed to the entire school and we had to apologise for stuff we didn’t actually do.
The boy’s mother said the decision from the school was making it seem like the boys would be ‘perpetrators in the future’.
One parent said her son in Year 7 was left confused about why he had to stage the bizarre apology, where boys were told to say sorry that women are raped and sexually assaulted. Another mother Danielle Shephard told 7News,
He said that he was made to stand up and basically apologise… it wasn’t explained properly to the male students what they were doing or why they were doing it. They really should have made more of an effort to notify the parents.
In a separate post on Facebook, Ms Shepherd shared another complaint from a parent who called the assembly ‘a joke’. She wrote,
Wow just wow… this is actually disgusting Brauer College… not at all impressed that you made my son apologise for something he’s never done nor considered doing.
A male student also criticised the assembly in a Snapchat post. The student wrote,
Today at Brauer they made every guy stand up and apologise to every girl for rape, sexual assault. Guys go through as much s**t as girls do.
Brauer College Principal Jane Boyle said the apology part of the assembly was ‘inappropriate’ but defended the school’s intentions.
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