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Exclusion from lessons for distribution of violent videos

This post is also available in: Deutsch

At the end of January, the school administration of a school in Aachen became aware that students in grade 7 had stored extremely violent videos and violent pornographic videos on their smartphones and had forwarded them to students. After further investigation, the principal suspended a student from school for 2 weeks in late February 2019.

What might be a reward for some, angered the student because of the entries and she turned to the administrative court. However, the emergency application was unsuccessful.

The court on this:

Disciplinary measures such as temporary exclusion from class serve the orderly instructional and educational work of the school. They could be ordered if a student violated duties. The acts mentioned in the administrative order as a breach of duty constituted such a breach of duty in themselves. The content of these videos was so disturbing that not only the applicant’s fellow students had to be protected from them, but their dissemination was also diametrically opposed to the teaching and educational work of the school. It was also to be assumed that the applicant had disseminated such videos in the class chat of his class. In the summary proceedings, he argued that he had shared other videos, but that they had been relatively harmless. Also, at the hearing on the disputed disciplinary measure, his parents had denied that the petitioner had shared videos of this content. However, in the minutes of a conversation between three teachers and the applicant, it was recorded that he had admitted to sharing several videos glorifying violence and violent pornography in the class chat. A supplement also said that several students had confirmed the content of the videos and indicated that the applicant had posted them in the class chat.

The two-week exclusion from classes was also proportionate. The measure is at the upper limit of what is permissible under the school law. However, the temporary exclusion from lessons is only a measure of medium intensity. Furthermore, the enormous severity of the breach of duty and the extent to which the orderly running of the school and the legal interests of other fellow students had been impaired as a result were to be taken into account.

The student can appeal against the decision, which will be decided by the Higher Administrative Court in Münster.

Because of the impact that such a reprimand can actually have, parents should certainly educate about the consequences.

Marian Härtel

Marian Härtel

Marian Härtel is a lawyer and entrepreneur specializing in copyright law, competition law and IT/IP law, with a focus on games, esports, media and blockchain.


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