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Last Updated: Friday, 6 June, 2003, 17:35 GMT 18:35 UK
School tribute to 'bullied' pupil
Hirst High school, Northumberland
Karl was a pupil at Hirst High School in Northumberland
School staff say they are devastated by the death of a Northumberland teenager, who killed himself because of bullying according to his parents.

The parents of Karl Peart, 16, say he had been taunted through primary school and routinely attacked throughout his secondary school career.

He is believed to have taken a fatal mixture of painkillers and alcohol.

The teenager was buried on Friday, close to his home in Lynemouth.

At his funeral service at St Aidan's Church in Lynemouth, a bouquet of flowers from his teacher was among 24 floral tributes.

The message from his teacher Mrs Woodman read: "I hope you find the peace you longed for. I tried to keep you safe, but my efforts were in vain."

His mother Sonya, 43, said Karl had endured a court case, in which a youth was ordered to pay him compensation for a street attack.

She said he could not face returning to school after the half-term break, following the court case.

She said he went to bed and placed a picture of her on his pillow.

He then wrote two notes for his mother and father, detailing in one of them the arrangements for his funeral - including playing the song I'm With You by chart star Avril Lavigne.

It is believed Karl then took painkillers and alcohol.

'Very supportive'

A coroner's office spokesman said a date for a full inquest would be set after toxicology tests had been carried out.

Ged Lee, head teacher at Hirst High School in Ashington, where Karl was a pupil, said: "Everyone at the school is devastated by Karl's death.

"GCSE exams have been re-scheduled so staff and pupils will be able to attend the funeral.

"The school has been very supportive. It would be inappropriate to comment further until after the inquest."

Earlier this year a study by Warwick University revealed one-third of bullied schoolchildren suffered significant levels of post-traumatic stress.

This study showed bullying, and particularly name-calling, was degrading for adolescents.

It also suggested verbal bullying or social manipulation could lead to victims feeling helpless and lacking control over their own feelings and actions.





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