Avele College students on parade in Apia town
APIA, SAMOA: TUESDAY 03 MAY 2016: Cabinet has today confirmed its decision to close Avele College pending the outcome of police investigations in to continued and increasing acts of violence by students.
The recent threats by Avele College students towards other schools, students and teachers, caused widespread panic and saw the deployment of police officers in riot gear earlier this week.
The Ministry of Police has been directed to urgently proceed with their investigations; to identify those who are responsible for encouraging and participating in acts of violence that have caused widespread disruption and danger to other schools and to the general public.
Cabinet has also decided that from 2017, all government grants for Mission Schools will be disbursed directly to schools, and no longer through their respective Education Boards. This will ensure that schools with students who habitually and continuously flout police authority will be denied future grant assistance.
Cabinet has also directed the Office of the Attorney General to draft legislation to help discourage, stop and prevent the type of behaviour that leads to acts of violence between school students, thereby causing injury and creating an environment of fear amongst students, teachers, parents and the general public.
This legislation should reflect Samoa’s principles of Christian living, cultural practices and modern-day disciplinary measures that are also used by other democratic forms of government, like Samoa, within the Commonwealth and United Nations family of nations.
The closure of Avele College is effective from Wednesday 4th May 2016, and the duties of the Principal and teachers are also suspended until further notice.