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Marist College involved in further alleged abuse claims

By Skidbladnir - 17 December 2007 35

ABC Online
The Australian(greater detail)

Retired Marist College Canberra (1970-1990s) teacher & continuing Marist Brother, Brother John Kosta is expected to be arrested following alleged abuse claims made against him.
There are two other as-yet-unnamed ex-Marist teachers to be investigated also.
These allegations were were raised as part of the ongoing investigation into Paul Lyons (Daramalan and Marist College Canberra teacher) through Jason Parkinson, of Porters Lawyers.

The total number of notifications Porters Lawyers has filed between the two schools of alleged sexual abuse by the four teachers involves 33 male former students, three of whom claim to have been abused at different times by both Lyons and Brother Kosta.

Personal note, not neccessarily the views of The-RiotAct: as an ex-student of Marist Canberra, I [Skidbladnir] will say that by a large and enviable margin, the teachers and staff at Marist are the finest set of teachers I put up with throughout my formative years (sample size:three different highschools, seven years in total, at least 9 subject tutorial teachers per year, a great many other non-tutorial support teachers and staff), and incidents such as this do not reflect on the school as whole.
That said, the incidence of -four- alleged abusers and unknown counts of sexual abuse concerns me, and I can fully understand why the current Headmaster (Mr Richard Sidorko) has called for an inquiry, and has said he will assist in any way he can.

Other than what I can see in the articles above, there has been no further public comment from Mr Sidorko.

Bear in mind that this is an ongoing investigation and these are only allegations at this time. If you know something take it to the relevant people.

What’s Your opinion?

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35 Responses to
Marist College involved in further alleged abuse claims
OpenYourMind2 8:49 pm 18 Dec 07

I know somebody affected. It went on in the 80s and had a profound affect on the victims from that era.

Absent Diane 4:54 pm 18 Dec 07

shut the bloody place down.

aa 4:33 pm 18 Dec 07

dblank – i went to marist and never experienced any of that! The only thing i did notice was the rugby players got extra attention than the non-players. Bullying happens at every school! Public/private/same sex/coed, it happens everywhere. Difference is (from experience) if you went upto the teachers at Marist regarding bullying, they ALWAYS acted on it.

Skidbladnir 4:31 pm 18 Dec 07

Thats pretty much everyone’s reaction to news of abuse by a person or persons in positions of trust.

If I ever met a friends biological dad (as opposed to her stepfather, who is a lovely man) it would be hard to hold back trying to beat the living shite out of him for the traumas he caused.

I would imagine that as part of the arrest\investigation there would be a certain degree of protective custody around the Brother now that he has been named. So hopefully in time, an appropriate amount of justice is served.

fnaah 3:44 pm 18 Dec 07

I was shocked, dismayed and angered when I first learned that classmates and people I knew had been subjected to this horror. I still consider myself extremely lucky not to have been directly affected, and I am glad that there is a chance for justice for the victims.

Skidbladnir 3:35 pm 18 Dec 07

Bullying is taken -very- seriously, from reports of people who work there currently and a student who was a victim.

But not just in response to the Benjamin Cox case, they took it pretty seriously when I was there also.

PS: Not part of any Marist Defence Force.

dblank 3:02 pm 18 Dec 07

attend Marist College during the period these two teachers were present. Thankfully I was not a recipient of their “attentions”. However, I will say that I found my time at Marist to be an extremely distressing and traumatic experience.If you were different and didnt fit in you were bullied mercilessly, and the teachers and brothers didnt seem to be concerned about this at all. I wonder if the culture at Marist has changed at all? My Nephew attends school there, and this is a fact that I have never really been comfortable with.

Skidbladnir 12:23 pm 18 Dec 07

Their parents may need answers, but as there are 1300 students at Marist in any given year (on current numbers), you’d only note any significant anomaly in Marist lifetime rates of suicide against a backdrop of the general male population of the same birth period, as suicide is going to be experienced in any large enough sample group.

Still, an inquiry may reveal and address certain problems that a PR company-managed damage control would otherwise ignore\deny\risk-manage into oblivion.

But whatever the result is, its not going to be pretty.

tickboom 11:43 am 18 Dec 07

So some boys who went to Marist during a period of 30 years have taken their own lives? Let’s say 100 students in a year group, so that’s 3000 (at least). So what you’re saying is that in a group of 3000 school students, some have attempted to take their own lives, or succeeded? There’s a shock.

Not to take away from the seriousness of what is being alleged here, but Sands, you just need to bear in mind that suicide is tragically a fact of life, and within 30 years I’d say a school would be bound to experience many attempts among its alumni – whether or not these incidents and allegations had taken place.

Sands 10:04 pm 17 Dec 07

I’ve heard that some boys who went to Marist during the time in question have tragically attempted to take – or have successfully taken – their own lives. It breaks my heart to think this could have something to do with it. The parents need answers.

Mr Waffle 6:25 pm 17 Dec 07

“It’s a pity that the Headmaster at Daramarlan doesn’t seem to share Mr Sidorko’s desire to assist in an enquiry. That school appears to prefer damage control to an honesty and open investigation.”

When I went there, I remember a teacher was quietly let go (with no explanation given), and the rumour was that a student had put in a complaint like this. It was definitely a “sweep under the rug” topic…

aa 5:21 pm 17 Dec 07

It’s not just the large compensation cases, its the fake cases that will follow. Or other students who studied there while the teachers where there who will try to get money for “i could have been and the school didn’t protect me”.

realityskin 4:26 pm 17 Dec 07

yeah, this is going to be MASSIVE .. largest compensation case of student abuse in history… it’s been in the works for two years …

V twin venom 4:13 pm 17 Dec 07

It’s a pity that the Headmaster at Daramarlan doesn’t seem to share Mr Sidorko’s desire to assist in an enquiry. That school appears to prefer damage control to an honesty and open investigation.

bugmenot 3:22 pm 17 Dec 07

As a student of the college through the 80’s, I had classmates in both the primary and secondary school who claimed to have been assaulted. A friends parents approached the school at the time with allegations and were bluntly dismissed. This will not be the end of the allegations – I personally believe there is at least one more teacher who has not been mentioned.

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