12/08/10 — School bus fight found on YouTube

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School bus fight found on YouTube

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on December 8, 2010 1:46 PM

A fight between two sixth-grade Grantham School students went viral when it was posted briefly on YouTube over the past week.

School officials said Tuesday that the incident, involving two girls on a middle school bus, actually took place on Thursday, Dec. 2.

"It was posted on YouTube and leaked to a TV station. The school was aware that there were some videos taken but not that it had been posted," said Ken Derksen, public information officer for the district.

It has since been removed from YouTube, Derksen added.

"Basically, two students got into an altercation on a Grantham School bus," Derksen said. "It started out as an argument and the kids argued for a little while. The bus driver was not aware because it was taking place in the back of the bus. As soon as the bus driver was aware, she was able to pull the bus over in a safe location and able to break up the fight."

While the district takes matters like this very seriously, Derksen said this situation reflects the rapid changes in modern technology. In the excerpt that aired Tuesday on a Raleigh TV station, students could be seen in the background holding up cell phones, recording the fight.

"There are fights that take place across the nation, but having a videotape gives a glimpse to parents and the community of what teachers and bus drivers may face when violence like this takes place," Derksen said. "The video is just another example of social media, where things are being posted to highlight these kinds of activity."

Unfortunately, Derksen noted, the fight is the type of thing schools have to deal with on a regular basis.

"Despite all the character education programs that are in place, and all the bullying education, these incidents do happen," he said. "We do our best to try to avoid these types of incidents."

There are policies and procedures in place, Derksen said, and like other incidents of this nature, this one has also been handled internally by school officials.

"We can't legally discuss any disciplinary action (against the students)," he said. "As far as the bus driver, the principal did meet with her to get her statement from what happened and their investigation of what transpired. (There was) no disciplinary action as far as the bus driver."