A Ramsgate head teacher says action has been taken following complaints that some students are destroying fencing, causing damage, intimidating nearby residents and were involved in the death of a hedgehog.
One resident, who asked not to be named, said people living in the Clements Road flats by the lower school site of Royal Harbour Academy are “prisoners in their own homes during school time.”
They added: “A small group of pupils have continually destroyed fencing and property to the rear of the flats in an attempt to find a shortcut to the school.
“When challenged by the residents they have received nothing but abuse and very strong language, one resident who observed a hedgehog being abused – which subsequently died – confronted the pupils but was called names.
“Greatly upset she returned to her flat only to find later stones and debris thrown at her balcony and door.
“Residents will no longer approach these youngsters because of the intimidation.”
The resident said property has been damaged in incidents that have been ongoing since September.
They added: “We are prisoners in our own homes particularly as three or four of these youngsters are on restricted timetables so even in school time they are free to roam around our properties. The attitude of these youngsters and their intimidation is causing people to seek alternative accommodation- this is not right. They are no older than 12-14 years of age and they are making our lives hell.”
The resident said the school needs to block the passageway and stop the destruction of property and trees and bushes in the nature area between the homes and the academy.
They say Thanet council has been asked to repair fencing that it owns (pictured above) but this has not yet been done.
Residents in Greenfield Road have also reported incidents to police and Thanet council.
Royal Harbour Academy head teacher Simon Pullen said sanctions had been put in place for RHA students who were involved but added that most incidents had taken place out of school hours and at weekends and also involved youngsters from other schools who were making camps in the nature area.
He said: “We want good relationships with our neighbours and expect the highest standard of behaviour from our kids.
“The incident with the hedgehog was not just our kids and happened outside of school hours. Some of our students did admit they were there although they said they did not injure the hedgehog. We have punished our students with sanctions that include exclusion for some of them.
“There are some students who go in the area on our side of the school at lunchtimes but there are also a lot of local kids, not from our school, building camps and dens there. We have asked our PFI provider to fix the fencing and deal with this. It is in hand, the metal parts of the fencing will be fixed in the ground and they will be putting in some concrete. We are sorry this has not moved quickly enough for some of the residents.”