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Girl, 7, threatened with knife at B.C. school
A Coquitlam, B.C. family say they are transferring their 7-year-old daughter to a new school after educators failed to discipline a classmate who threatened her with a knife.
The girl, who is not being identified, told CTV Vancouver that the incident happened in November.
“I was really scared,” the girl said. “He held a pocket knife up to my throat. Each time I got scared, he kept putting it closer and he said if I tell one person, he’ll cut off my wrist, (and) if I tell more, he will cut off my head.”
The girl waited until late April to tell her parents. “I didn’t want to tell my parents because I thought he would do it,” she said.
In the interim, her parents said that their once-outgoing child had become quiet and withdrawn.
“It definitely threw me off,” the girl’s mother told CTV Vancouver. “I was shocked.”
The girl’s parents quickly brought the alleged incident to the attention of the school. Despite a number of meetings with school and district staff with both sets of parents and the children, the school decided not to discipline the 7-year-old boy due to his age.
School District No. 43 spokesperson Peter Chevrier said in a statement that it “implemented an age-appropriate response using a teaching and restorative approach, versus a punitive one, to help the students understand what occurred and why it was not appropriate.”
The school district’s policies prohibit weapons on school property and at school functions. The policy allows principals to confiscate the weapons, suspend the students, remove people from the property and do a threat assessment.
The policy also “authorizes principals and or vice principals to impose an appropriate level of consequences upon any student threatening the safety or welfare of others.”
The boy at the centre of the accusation is remaining at the school. The girl’s parents, meanwhile, say they shouldn’t feel the need to move their daughter to a new school when she is the victim.
“She’s such a nice person, so giving and so caring,” her father told CTV Vancouver. “Hopefully she can get back to that.”
With a report by CTV Vancouver’s Jon Woodward