THE head of a secondary school where a teenage boy sustained a fatal injury has assured parents they do not tolerate bad behaviour from pupils.

Debbie Godfrey-Phaure, the executive head of Portchester School, defended the school’s record on pupil discpline following an inquest into the death of 16-year-old Kyle Rees.

Kyle died after he was struck by an indoor hockey ball thrown by one of his friends. The jury concluded his friend did not intend to hit anyone and Kyle’s death was a tragic accident.

They also made no criticism of the school, now known as Harewood College, for the atmosphere in which the incident occurred. Minutes before Kyle was struck, dozens of pupils had been throwing balls, water bottles, shoes and even a chair at each other.

One teacher said she felt “intimidated” and “scared” by the scene, while another described how some students laughed at teachers attempting to disperse the crowds.

Kyle’s mother Tanya Cooper said she felt the school had “failed” her son by leaving pupils unsupervised during the changeover period between registration and lessons.

But Mrs Godfrey-Phaure said they took their duty of care towards pupils very seriously. She said: “We appreciate that questions have been raised over isolated issues of student discipline at the school following Kyle’s tragic acciden.

“That is understandable, especially with emotions running high.

“However, it must be stressed that the inquest jury made no criticism of the school about behaviour.”

She added: “We are extremely proud of our boys, the vast majority of whom are good and well behaved. There is a lot of inspiring work being done here by the youngsters and their devoted teachers.

“Like any secondary school, there are occasions when students having fun can spill over into something more than it should be, with sudden flashpoints.

“Parents and guardians should rest assured that we have strict rules about students’ behaviour and when students do misbehave they are dealt with swiftly and effectively.”

She said they had taken steps to reduce movement in the school between lessons and now only allow footballs in the playground.

Bournemouth East MP Tobias Ellwood told the Echo he would be seeking a meeting with Mrs Godfrey-Phaure to ensure that any lessons that needed to be learnt, have been.

“I’ve been following the whole issue very carefully and will be looking to discuss some of the issues that have been raised with the executive head,” he said.

Mrs Godfrey-Phaure said she would be happy to meet Mr Ellwood.