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Dublin: 5 °C Sunday 16 December, 2018

Dublin private school suspends two boys for racist abuse and violent threats

The three first-years had been part of a private messaging group.

Image: SIPA USA/PA Images

TWO FIRST-YEAR students at a private Dublin secondary school have been suspended after making death threats and racist comments to a black classmate, has learned.

The three boys were part of a Whatsapp group which was created when they all began their classes earlier this month.

One of the children then started receiving abuse on the messaging app by two boys in his class.

What started out as mocking then turned into more violent and racist exchanges.

In messages seen by, the boy, who is 12 years old, is referred to as a “fucking n****r”. They then threaten to attack the boy.

His parents noticed that their child was acting differently and discovered the racist slurs and violent threat on his phone. After speaking with the principal of the school, it was decided to suspend the two boys who are believed to have sent the messages and the board of management is now deciding whether or not to expel them.

The school has been contacted for comment yesterday but received no correspondence from the school by time of publication.

A complaint has yet to be filed to gardaí relating to the incident. However, it is understood that the parents of the child have consulted solicitors on the matter.

Alex Cooney, chief executive of CyberSafeIreland, warned parents to be vigilant about online safety and said that incidents of bullying and threats are “sadly too common”.

“There are a lot of incidents that we deal with. But advice for parents is to have regular and open conversations with your children about what they’re doing online. Make it normal to have that conversation.

“Parents should set up clear ground rules on when and where they’re using their smartphones.

“Don’t let them disappear into their rooms with their phones. If they’re in the living room or kitchen or wherever, you can throw your eye over.”

Read: Cyberbullying – ‘Girls’ lives can be ripped apart’>

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