Tonga School Violence Essay

The escalation in student violence is a major crisis for the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga, its General Secretary Rev Dr Tevita Havea says, and he is suggesting that closing the rival boarding schools of ‘Atele and Toloa for ten years might be a way forward for the schools and the country.

He was commenting on last week’s student attack on a house at Tofoa that has left a 22 year old man in a coma and a 15 year old with serious injuries, and 147 students, ex-students and a teacher charged with offences.

“We consider it as a major crisis for the church and also the schools and for the country,” he said. “We have now activated various school activities to see what can be done … to deal with violence in the schools”.

Police Commissioner Grant O’Fee said the attack was a riot and he compared the students’ behaviour to serious gangs in New Zealand.

“Very severe criminal damage. Everything in the house smashed, every single thing that could be smashed was smashed,” he said.

Fr. ‘Aisake Vaisima, the president of the Tonga Secondary School Principals’ Association says the TSSPA has decided that finals for the secondary schools’ rugby tournament 2013 will continue with only “parents and guardians of students in the teams” allowed to attend. He said this decision, “was confirmed by the Ministry of Education and the Directors of Schools Systems”.

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News category: Asia Pacific.

It's everyone's 'responsiblity to make charged for a better world'

NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (Matangi Tonga, March 8, 2017) – Tonga Police held its second Open Day to mark International Women’s Day 2017, connecting young students and young police recruits under an international theme, 'Be Bold For Change' where everyone has a responsibility to make changes for a better world.

Class 6 students from the Maamaloa Primary School, Hilliard Memorial School and St Francis of Assisi Primary School participated in an essay competition to educate boys and girls about respect for each other and ending violence against our women and children.

The essay winner was Fololina Fifita from Maamaloa Primary School, awarded by the New Zealand High Commissioner HE Sarah Walsh. 

Police Commissioner Stephen Caldwell said they opened their door to the public, to share their vision for a safer community and show some of the things they do on a daily basis to help keep the public safe.

"For the young people before us, the Police role is to protect and help you to be safe and grow into good citizens."

He said this year's theme ‘Be Bold for Change' means having the courage to do what is right, not to accept the way things are but ask how they should be and work together for a better world.

"As I look out at our young children and indeed our young police recruits, we all have a responsibility to their future to act now to make the necessary changes for a better world."

He said one of the changes is about family violence and acknowledged the work of the Women and Children Crisis Centre and the Tonga National Centre for Women and Children.

"On this important day, International Women’s Day we must all do our best to end Family Violence, to help break the cycle of violence in our homes."

The International Women's Day (IWD) is celebrated on 8 March annually.

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