Meadowbrook students to know fate after schoolmate injured

Meadowbrook students to know fate after schoolmate injured

...Police warn against 'tripping jump challenge'

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

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WHILE administrators at Meadowbrook High School are investigating to determine the appropriate punishment for students in a “tripping jump challenge” that left a schoolmate injured, the police have issued a warning against the practice, noting that repercussions could follow.

In a video that went viral online, two grade 10 students are seen tripping a grade nine student who fell and injured his hand.

The “challenge” involves three individuals, one of whom is oblivious to the rules of the game and is coerced into jumping together with the other two individuals, not knowing he or she will be tripped.

The Jamaica Observer has learnt that the parents of the Meadowbrook High students recorded participating in the challenge were at the school for a meeting yesterday, and more meetings are to follow.

In a release yesterday, the constabulary's Corporate Communications Unit (CCU) said in many instances the challenge has resulted in individuals receiving serious injuries.

CCU said, too, that aside from civil damages, criminal charges — including assault and, in worst-case scenarios, manslaughter — could be levied against participants of the game in the event the police receive a report about injuries or death.

“The police are strongly advising individuals, particularly schoolchildren, to desist from participating in this challenge. Parents are also advised to pay close attention to their children and advise them about the dangers of the challenge,” the CCU release said.

President of the Jamaica Teachers' Association (JTA) Owen Speid has also made it clear that students should desist from continuing this challenge.

“Let us, as a nation, use this as an opportunity to unite around the cause of taking back our schools from the idle fractions that seek to destroy at all costs. While we call on all students across the island to immediately cease partaking in this practice, we are asking school administrators, grade supervisors, classroom teachers, and student leaders to be at their vigilant best. We are calling on them to implement strategies to mitigate against these gruesome acts,” Speid said, adding that the JTA is deeply concerned and disturbed.

“We see it as a deadly threat to safety and security within our schools at a time when we are seeking to make our schools into safe zones which are conducive to teaching and learning,” he continued.

The Ministry of Education, Youth and Information has also denounced the challenge.

“The prank is a horrific act and demonstrates a lack of good judgement on the part of those involved and should not be tolerated. Students are partaking in the prank not realising that a fall of such nature can cause serious physical, mental and emotional damage, with great legal and financial implications,” the ministry said.

The ministry also said that schools should ensure that parents are made aware of the situation and their support enlisted in reiterating, among students, the importance of respect for each other, the need for empathy and for every child to feel and be safe, as well as to use social media responsibly.

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