Inquest: Alex Wildman bullied before suicide


SAFFRON HOWDEN
Brisbane Times
ALEX WILDMAN’S school principal and deputy admitted days after the bullied teenager committed suicide he might still be alive if the school had handled his case differently.

His mother, Justine Kelly, told the inquest into the 14-year-old’s death in July 2008, that Kadina High’s then-principal Stephen Lowndes and deputy Bradd Farrell had visited her Lismore home. “I said to them, had they handled things differently, would Alex still be alive?” she said. “They agreed.”

Mrs Kelly said Mr Farrell had discouraged her, against her instincts, from reporting to police a punching assault on her son that occurred on school grounds less than two days before Alex took his life.

“He said to us, if you contact the police the matter will escalate, which left us feeling as though we had to look for alternative solutions,” she said.

Mr Farrell had rejected the idea of mediation between the students, their parents and the school, Mrs Kelly said.

She detailed incidents – one where Alex was shoulder-charged and another in which he was punched in the nose and threatened – outside school grounds weeks before he died. Full story.

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