Polish teenager found dead in school toilets 'was targeted by racist bullies'

Dagmara Przybysz

Dagmara Przybysz

Dagmara, whose body was found in a cubicle in the maths department, was praised as a handsome, happy and popular girl who had a very bright future.

But the inquest heard she had confided to friends and family that she had been singled out because of her nationality by bullies who called her a "stupid Pole" and told her she "did not belong here".

"I did not know what they said on this occasion but it was just a few days before Dagmara passed away. I don't know whether these incidents were racist in nature".

Mrs Przybysz, from Truro, said a particular group of girls was causing her daughter problems. "She said ... it was not a problem anymore", Przybysz told the inquest.

The alarm was raised when Dagmara failed to turn up for a lesson on 17 May a year ago. A postmortem found she died as a result of hanging. She was barged into in the school corridor.

Mr Przybysz said they made a decision to send her to Pool Academy because it had a good reputation, though most of her friends went to Redruth School. "She told me she would have comments such as "stupid Pole".

"Comments were made towards another Polish child and Dagmara would always try to stand up to them".

Answering questions from Dale Collins, who represents Pool Academy, Mr and Mrs Przybysz - who are not represented at the hearing, said pupils had made racist comments to Dagmara "a few times" in the last few months. "She often talked about problems and she was often hurt when people said unpleasant things".

The inquest also heard about an incident in a PE lesson that left Dagmara very upset the day before she died.

She fell out with pupils during a rounders game and needed medical treatment after striking a wall in frustration.

Mr Przybysz said he was waiting outside school to collect Dagmara when his wife called to say the police were at their home and that Dagmara was dead.

"My wife and I kept wondering whether we should have kept Dagmara home that day, but there was no physical sign that she had taken any tablets, otherwise we would have taken her to hospital", he added.

Lewis said there were false rumours on social media that evening they were going to split up.

A school friend, who can not be named for legal reasons, also told the inquest Dagmara had been targeted by racist bullies.

She said: 'I used to sit next to her in class. She told me when year 10 girls said she "did not belong here".

'I told her to report this and I only know about this from what she told me'.

Dagmara's father, Jedrzej Przybysz, said that on the morning of her death he received a phone call from his daughter. "She was upset and crying and did not want to tell me the reason", he said.

Pastoral support worker at Pool Academy, Susan Kent, said: "To the best of my knowledge, Dagmara never mentioned any problems with racism to me or any other person at school". "I told her to go to school and on return we would have a serious conversation about this problem".

However Mrs Przybysz said she thought the biggest problem for Polish-born Dagmara at school "was not racism but bullying".

Her uncle Tomasz Dobek, who took her to hospital, said in a statement read out in court: "She said she had been in PE and that some girls had laughed at her... she said she had got angry at them and punched the wall".

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