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“The safety of our students is paramount”: Oak’s interim principal offers reassurance to parents

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Interim principal of Melksham Oak, Aidan Blowers, has offered reassurance to parents that the school is taking measures to keep students safe following the report of a fight earlier this month.

In the last issue of Melksham News, it was reported that a ‘gang’ of around 50 students aged between 11 and 12-years old, set upon five other students after school on Thursday 2nd May. 

At the time, the school commented that it was supporting the police with their investigations and that staff had been in communication with parents of some of the young people involved.

Following on from the incident, interim principal Aidan Blowers has written to parents and guardians explaining that a number of the pupils involved have since been excluded from the school.

In his letter, he said, “The safety of our students is paramount and we will do all that we can to work as a school with the police and the community moving forward. 

“Such incidents are exceptionally rare and it is critical that we get our response right. We have extended our senior duty staff at the start and end of the day and will continue this in the short term as students enter and leave school.

“We know that our school is safe, and even though this incident took place nearly a mile away from school outside of school time, we have given and taken statements and excluded a number of students for their involvement. 

“You will appreciate that getting an accurate picture of what happened has taken time and we did not want to fuel speculation with any commentary that might be inaccurate.

“We all care deeply about the safety of our young people, so please do talk to your child about being vigilant. If they are concerned for their safety in any way, and it is outside of school, they should call the police for support. 

“This information has been shared with staff and students. Hopefully we can all work together to keep all of our young people safe. Thanks as ever for your support.”

The local community co-ordinator for Wiltshire Police, PC Charly Chilton, said, “ We are aware of a group of young people in Melksham who have been involved in anti-social behaviour and are carrying out ongoing work to tackle this.

“As and when young people are identified as being involved in anti-social behaviour or criminality, then contact will be made by the most appropriate agency.

“In the short term, additional high visibility patrols are being conducted by local PCSOs in Melksham.”

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