• Cheek

Scandals plague Brisbane Boys College

This article contains stories of sexual assault and may not be appropriate for some readers.

The petition detailing thousands of graphic incidents of sexual violence launched a fortnight ago by Chanel Contos has shone a light on the need for better sexual consent education in private schools. There have been stories from many prominent private schools across the country, and members of the public, advocates, and politicians are beginning to call for improved sexual consent education. Brisbane Boys College (BBC) was one of the schools named in the allegations, but that's not the first time the prestigious school has taken a hit in the public eye.

People in the BBC community will tell you that the Courier Mail 'has it out' for the College, and a Google search will show any reader a list of negative stories published in the Queensland paper dating back many years.

Brisbane Boys College in Toowong. Photo from Courier Mail

Last month, a woman who previously attended Brisbane Girls Grammar School alleged she was sexually assaulted by a Year 10 BBC student. Her disturbing testimony included the quote "I cried the entire time. After he was finished I noticed the bed sheets were covered in my blood."

Since then, it has been reported that the principal of the prestigious college has been 'pressured out,' and will leave within the next few weeks. Just today, it was reported that a senior executive at the school has also resigned. This comes after a number of high-up staff at the College have departed their roles.

The staff turnover is reported to be linked to the scandals that took place in the College last year, when the school was in the midst of a number of issues involving sexting and violence. Last year, four students were expelled from BBC after an alleged 'gang bashing' occurred. The Courier Mail published multiple news stories on this issue, and reported that a petition had been started, saying the expulsion was 'unjust'. It was later reported that the parents of the four students attempted to sue the school for $750 000, but later dropped the suit when the students were reinstated. One of the parents was allegedly quoted saying the institution was '"no better than a state school." Fighting words.

The gang bashing incident was reportedly linked to what the Courier Mail called a 'sexting scandal', where the target of the violence was found to be involved in sexting.

Many years prior, in 2014, the Director of Rowing (??) at BBC was fired for using the term 'wanga' when referencing a penis (???) in front of students. In what was a very confusing scandal with a lot of back and forth, the Rowing Director 'freely admitted' to "telling boys aged 14 to 16 not to twirl their wangas," and that he would use ''theatrical body movements and wave his finger in front of his trousers to mimic a penis as he spoke to about 50 boys in Years 9, 10 and 11."

A number of years later, in 2019, the former staff member settled in a court case (which has been going on for 5 years) against the Presbyterian and Methodist Schools' Association (PMSA), who owns BBC, and was said to be the recipient of over $1 million for defamation and to cover legal costs. It's unclear exactly how much money he received from the settlement.

NB. The Courier Mail articles have not been linked as they are behind paywalls. If you have a Courier Mail subscription, all articles are viewable here.