Testimony 36

Just before I entered KEGS for sixth form, I was groped non-consensually at a party by one of the KEGS boys in my year. Upon arriving at the school, this boy had circulated that we had been boyfriend and girlfriend. We had never been anything like that. We had met up a couple of times in Year 11, because I’d said on a group chat that I was craving watching a certain chick flick and he said he could lend it to me if I wanted. As it transpires, he didn’t own the DVD, he’d bought it for the excuse to spend time with me (I didn’t know this at the time) and said I could only have the DVD if I gave him 45 minutes of my time. I felt uncomfortable when I learned of this – it felt vaguely stalkerish to me. A little while later, the same boy groped another girl in school. When it became apparent that the senior leadership team wasn’t doing anything about this, I told a senior member of staff what had happened to me in the summer. I was told my this member of staff that I was inappropriate for bringing it up now, a stirrer and I was forbidden from bringing this issue up again. Soon after, I was called into another senior staff member’s office. The first staff member was also present. The first staff member was suddenly more sympathetic towards me in the presence of the other staff member. Yet, I was still asked disappointing questions that were very victim-blaming in nature. The gist of the staff response was to ask why I hadn’t contacted the police over my incident, with the insinuation that the event couldn’t have been a big deal if I hadn’t got the police involved. In fact, I didn’t know my rights at that age and maybe I would have pressed charges if I had known what they were and felt supported by the school.

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