Year 12 students vandalize vehicles belonging to a competing school.

Unruly Year 12 students from Melbourne’s private Firbank Grammar school have been accused of vandalizing cars as part of their end-of-term celebrations. The incident took place on October 11, 2023, and involved the students damaging vehicles belonging to Year 12 students at Brighton Grammar, a private boys’ school closely associated with Firbank Grammar.

According to the Herald of the Sun newspaper, some Firbank Grammar girls were caught on video vandalizing a student’s car. The footage shows them covering the vehicle with plastic wrap and writing “highly offensive words” on it. Another video shows Firbank Grammar students standing next to a second vandalized car.

The incident was reported to the police, and at least five vehicles were reported to have been vandalized. The Brighton Grammar students claimed that the Firbank Grammar Year 12 leavers scratched some of the vehicles and painted parts of them with nail polish. The actions of these students demonstrate their lack of awareness of the consequences of malicious damage, as they seemed to be unaware that it is a criminal offense.

An anonymous Brighton Grammar student expressed their dissatisfaction with the situation, stating, “There are hundreds, if not thousands, of damage to some of the cars, it’s just not acceptable.”

The incident is not an isolated one, as similar incidents have occurred in the past in different Australian schools. Muck-up day, which is considered a school leaver tradition in Australia, involves graduating Year 12 students engaging in pranks and celebrations before moving on to university or full-time jobs. However, the tradition has faced scrutiny in recent years due to concerns about public health and safety.

In 2020, Shore School in Sydney made headlines when a small group of Year 12 students planned “illegal and disrespectful activities for year 12 clean-up day.” These incidents shed light on the extent to which some students are willing to go to participate in this controversial tradition.

It is important for schools and educators to address the issue of muck-up day pranks and find alternatives that promote positive and responsible behavior among graduating students. This could involve organized activities and events that allow students to celebrate their achievements in a respectful and safe manner.

The incident involving the Firbank Grammar and Brighton Grammar students brings into focus the need for education on the consequences of their actions. Schools should emphasize the importance of respecting others’ property and the potential legal ramifications of vandalism.

Overall, the incident serves as a reminder that despite the intention of harmless pranks, they can quickly escalate into acts of vandalism and have serious consequences. It is crucial for schools, students, and parents to work together to ensure that end-of-term celebrations are memorable for all the right reasons and do not involve any illegal or harmful activities.

The incident involving the Year 12 students from Firbank Grammar and Brighton Grammar is a wakeup call for schools and communities to address the issue of muck-up day pranks and the potential for vandalism and malicious damage. By promoting responsible behavior and creating a safe and respectful environment for students, schools can ensure that end-of-term celebrations are enjoyable for everyone involved without causing harm or destruction.