Dulwich College is a 'breeding ground for sexual predators'

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GodAtum
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Dulwich College is today accused of being a “breeding ground for sexual predators” in an open letter organised by a former schoolboy that contains more than 100 anonymous accounts of assault, harassment and sharing intimate photos online.The letter, written by Samuel Schulenburg, 19, a former pupil at the south London private school, said “experiences of assault, revenge pornography and slut shaming were exacerbated by ... young men who ... laughed at stories of sexual violence”.
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/d...aims-vv8s6nxpx

I went to that school, so am scared that my name will be brought up in any investigation :afraid::afraid:
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BarMade
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Firstly, it is important to state that the behaviour (assault, harassment, sharing intimate photos online, revenge pornography and slut shaming) is disgusting behaviour. There is no excuse for the distress and upset that is caused by those that perpetrate it.

Secondly, it is important to acknowledge that some people do not appreciate the harm that they cause through their behaviour (be that because of lack of empathy, or because they suffer processing difficulties, or because they have been damaged to such an extent themselves that they see the behaviour as normal).

Thirdly, if a person is not within the categories in the second point, and is mature enough to realise the harm done (and the potential consequences for both themselves and their victims), then the person should consider ways in which to tackle the issues caused- this may begin with acknowledging the action which was harmful (to themselves, the victims, and the public at large), then attempt to rectify the issue (if some damage limitation can be achieved, for example, by removing pictures or comments online, making apologies to the people involved- without trying to justify actions, condemning similar actions by others), then lead by example to call on others to not do as they did and model better behaviours.

Fourthly, It is important to know that those behaviours can not be undone so perpetrators must listen to victims regarding how they can help, and act upon what they hear.

Finally, every experience is a learning one- so learn from it.
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Napp
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Several of my cousins went here, cant say they come across as perverts or rapists. Then again, given this is the word of but one disaffected former pupil who is speaking from the past we should treat his opinion as just that, an opinion.
To be frank i doubt its much worse than any other school, this being a problem in almost every single one. Especially when it comes to sending nudes around, kids generally just dont think of the 3rd order effects of this (such as their friends further sharing them) nor that its illegal.
I'd be careful in ascribing too much to this anyway though, not to diminish the effect of being a victim of such things has on someones life, but these are the actions of children and that should be kept in mind.
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Joleee
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OP would you be able to copy and paste the whole article into your op so that those of us without a subscription can read it?
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Joleee
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(Original post by DiddyDec)
In the meantime


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Dulwich College is today accused of being a “breeding ground for sexual predators” in an open letter organised by a former schoolboy that contains more than 100 anonymous accounts of assault, harassment and sharing intimate photos online.

The letter, written by Samuel Schulenburg, 19, a former pupil at the south London private school, said “experiences of assault, revenge pornography and slut shaming were exacerbated by ... young men who ... laughed at stories of sexual violence”.

His letter includes about 100 anonymous testimonies written by girls who went to neighbouring schools, such as James Allen’s Girls’ School (Jags). One claims there was “an established rape culture” at the school.

In a statement issued yesterday, Dr Joe Spence, master at Dulwich, said the school “condemned unreservedly” the “alleged social and sexual misconduct” by current and former students described in the open letter. He said the alleged behaviour was “distressing and entirely unacceptable”.

He added that Dulwich wanted to help boys with lessons on issues such as consent, pornography and all forms of casual and overt sexism.

Schulenburg — who set up the LGBTQ Society while he was at Dulwich and is now a student at Oxford University — said the issue was a long-running problem at the school.

“We had students in Year 7 [aged 11-12] writing stories about things that happened to them that were frighteningly recent, and then equally we had people in their thirties writing about their experiences,” he said.

Dulwich, whose alumni include PG Wodehouse, Raymond Chandler, Ernest Shackleton and Nigel Farage, and which charges around £21,250 a year, is the latest in a growing number of private schools to be engulfed in claims of an epidemic of sexual misconduct. Other names include Latymer Upper, Westminster, King’s College Wimbledon and St Paul’s Boys.

Billie Errington, 23, a TV script editor, said she set up a Facebook page for a feminist society when she was at Jags which was “invaded and trolled” by Dulwich College boys. “We all knew the boys at Dulwich had a long history of being violent sexual abusers,” she said. “We knew boys were non-consensually sharing images, that girls were being filmed having sex and did not know they were being filmed and those films were being sent round the school.”

A former head girl at Jags said she had reported the way in which Dulwich boys were using a polling app called Waggle It to rate the sexual attractiveness of girls at her school, and what sex acts they would like to perform on them. In one poll, two-thirds of the boys said they would rather have cancer than be a feminist.

She said the atmosphere made girls feel insecure. “I am a young adult now, and I wish I could go back and tell my 15, 16, 17-year-old peers that we were worth so much more,” she said.

Jags said it “remains committed to supporting all students and staff in challenging unacceptable behaviour. Safeguarding our pupils is our priority and we take seriously and act upon any allegations within our community”. The school said it did not know about the use of the polling app.

This weekend a government spokesman warned that “any abuse towards a child, whatever form it takes, is unacceptable. Schools should be a place where all children feel safe and are protected from harm.”

He said that schools that had failed to keep girls safe could be referred to IICSA (the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse). A source close to Gavin Williamson, the education secretary, said that Ofsted inspectors could also be sent in to investigate the safeguarding culture of the private schools “if these concerns persist and are not properly looked at”.

The allegations started to emerge on an Instagram page called Everyone’s Invited after the murder of Sarah Everard. More than 5,000 anonymous testimonies have been posted on it.

Soma Sara, 22, a former boarder at the girls’ boarding school Wycombe Abbey, who set up the page, said that a taskforce is being created to tackle “sexual violence and rape culture”. It will include “head teachers and senior staff from a number of schools across the UK — state and independent, mainly secondary but also primary. The group will collaborate with children’s services and with the police and will work with child and adolescent psychologists,” she said.

Priorities for the group include teaching children about sexual consent; giving pupils the confidence to be “active bystanders” willing to call out misconduct; and encouraging schools to report criminal behaviour.

Sara said: “I could never have imagined this project could have been so successful in exposing rape culture so quickly. I am doing everything I can to change things in schools for the next generation.”

Maria Miller, the former chairwoman of the women and equalities committee, which carried out a report into sexual violence in schools five years ago, said: “Peer-on-peer abuse cannot be written off as banter.”

She said the Charity Commission should investigate the private schools named to see whether they had breached charities law by failing to tackle sexism and uphold equal opportunities. Private schools are classed as charities, which gives them significant tax advantages.

St Paul’s, King’s College School, Latymer Upper, Westminster and Dulwich have all condemned the behaviour described in the online testimonies. All said they would refer allegations to the authorities, which in some cases could include the police. Some of the schools have brought in independent experts to review policies and values and offered past and present pupils counselling.

Other schools named in some of the online testimonies, including some of the girls schools, have written to parents, pupils and alumnae expressing their concern and offering advice and support.

In a statement yesterday, Joseph Spence, master of Dulwich College, said the school “condemned unreservedly” the “alleged social and sexual misconduct” by students described in the open letter.

Spence said the school would address named allegations and refer them to “external authorities where appropriate”. It has invited Samuel Schulenburg to work with the school, and wants to draw up a “charter relating to the treatment of women to ensure that things are better in the future”.

SCHOOLS’ RESPONSES

St Paul’s Boys £25,908 a year
Alerted the local authority’s children’s services of anonymous allegations, and will inform police if it is given accused pupils’ names.

King’s College, Wimbledon £22,335
“Has received serious disclosures ... which have been referred to our statutory partners in line with safeguarding procedures.” It is appointing a panel of experts “to conduct a forensic review of the school’s policies and values”.

Latymer Upper £20,835
Will refer cases to external agencies where appropriate. Intends to commission an independent review of safeguarding practices.

Westminster £31,491
Launched consultation. Headmaster said: “Behaviours like these have absolutely no place at our school ... We are determined to help pupils past and present who are affected.”
brilliant - thank you!
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Hallouminatus
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Similar stories coming out of several other private schools: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/c...ed6354b15fd919
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Napp
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(Original post by Hallouminatus)
Similar stories coming out of several other private schools: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/c...ed6354b15fd919
I wonder why the focus on private schools? Its not like state schools are any better. Having been to both i can happily attest they were exactly the same, bar some nuance.
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DiddyDec
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(Original post by Napp)
I wonder why the focus on private schools? Its not like state schools are any better. Having been to both i can happily attest they were exactly the same, bar some nuance.
I would imagine because private school have a tendency to cover things up for PR purposes, state schools don't quite have that same imperative.
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Cheese Bits
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I wonder if this will be the tip of the iceberg. We've been through this with the church and football clubs.

Dulwich have now got the police involved.
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Genaro_
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I went to a private school and whilst there didn't appear to be a wider problem of that sort of behaviour, there were what you could call the grassroots of that behaviour in some people. And other isolated incidents.
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egerton59
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Why should be afraid unless you've harassed or assaulted girls yourself??
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egerton59
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(Original post by Napp)
I wonder why the focus on private schools? Its not like state schools are any better. Having been to both i can happily attest they were exactly the same, bar some nuance.
There's a culture of entitlement at private schools which encourages boys to think that they can get away with anything.
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(Original post by GodAtum)
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/d...aims-vv8s6nxpx

I went to that school, so am scared that my name will be brought up in any investigation :afraid::afraid:
If you're scared, it's because you engaged in that kind of behaviour.
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GodAtum
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All I'll say is I'm scared of my past coming back to haunt me.
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Napp
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(Original post by egerton59)
There's a culture of entitlement at private schools which encourages boys to think that they can get away with anything.
Not really, at the public schools possibly, but most people i met at private schools were as down to earth as any at state schools.
Then again, given you just lumped tens of thousands of students into some ridiculous trope, well.
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BarMade
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No I strongly disagree that this a private school issue. Sexual assault and assault in general happens at all types of schools. However, those schools that do not deal with it should be hauled over the coals. My sons went to a private school where there was an incident of a senior school boy distributing sexual images of his girlfriend. They quite rightly expelled him. That is how it should be dealt with. If you abuse your position of privilege then you deserve to be stripped of it.
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nulli tertius
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(Original post by BarMade)
No I strongly disagree that this a private school issue. Sexual assault and assault in general happens at all types of schools. However, those schools that do not deal with it should be hauled over the coals. My sons went to a private school where there was an incident of a senior school boy distributing sexual images of his girlfriend. They quite rightly expelled him. That is how it should be dealt with. If you abuse your position of privilege then you deserve to be stripped of it.
May I mention two relevant distinctions between private and state schools.

Firstly state schools often have a much more embedded bureaucratic culture. Bureaucracy comes with pluses and minuses but it helps school leadership where allegations are made to deal with them correctly rather than informally and inadequately.

There are very few state boys schools remaining. Many of the independent schools implicated are not fully coeducational. I am not going to psycho-analyse the differences between pupils in single sex and mixed schools. I am not qualified to do so. However, in a single sex school it inevitably means that any victim is an outsider to the school community and any inappropriate behaviour before there is a victim is “out of school” behaviour. In mixed state schools inappropriate behaviour is invariably directed at a member of the perpetrator’s school community.
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Contested Claim
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This is set to become a massive scandal.
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DiddyDec
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(Original post by Joleee)
brilliant - thank you!
Turns out we aren't supposed to post full paywalled articles due to copyright concerns.

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Joleee
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(Original post by DiddyDec)
Turns out we aren't supposed to post full paywalled articles due to copyright concerns.

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christ, now we're in a conspiracy :facepalm: sorry mate, honestly my bad :getmecoat:
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