Sexual violence at school is part of student life

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Four out of five teachers at schools witnessed sexual violence in 2012, which according to researchers, is not translating into preventive measures, so students have no idea what is OK and what is not. Some 12% of students have been a victim of sexual violence, which includes unwanted gestures or comments (harassment), being touched, groped, assaulted and raped. If I were a bad student, my boundaries would be what I can get away with without being caught. How can schools make a big deal out of teaching children about sexuality and even homosexuality, but not deal with preventing sexual violence? Or we’ve missed something.

Sexuality research institute Rutgers WPF has said that all secondary schools should draw up rules to make it clear that some forms of sexual behaviour are unacceptable. I am surprised this doesn’t already exist, and if it does, it should make the papers as well.

Forcibly putting one’s tongue into someone else’s mouth is now no longer be classified as rape, according to Dutch courts this week. Imagine, French kissing (in Dutch, ‘tongzoenen’, or ‘tongue kissing’) was considered rape, but all of the above is still taking place in school.

I remember a boy who was taller and more developed than the rest of us in my first year of secondary school had poked me very hard in the ‘breast’. I was wearing overalls and he basically pushed really hard on the button part several times. I waited until he walked off and kicked him in the balls from behind, forcing him to the ground. I was dead scared he would beat me up, but because his friends saw it, I was OK. Not defending myself would have made it worse, à la Freaks and Geeks.

(Links: Dutch News, www.nrc.nl)

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