Family of Ana Kriegel lodge formal complaint about school bullying to KWETB

Senan Hogan

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Senan Hogan

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editor@kildarepost.com

Parents of tragic Ana Kriegel to attend community event with her pals

The late Ana Kriegel

The family of tragic teenager Ana Kriegel has lodged a formal complaint with the Kildare and Wicklow Education and Training Board (KWETB) over how her school responded to allegations that the 14-year-old was being subjected to bullying and harassment by teenagers.

The KWETB confirmed to the Leader that it is “engaged with a statutory body” on the issue but couldn’t comment further as it is obliged to respect the confidentiality of the process. 

The Kriegel family believe the school failed to properly address their concerns over how it was dealing with their fears that their daughter Ana was being bullied.

The bullying endured by Ana featured prominently in the trial of two teenage boys who were convicted of her murder by a jury at the Central Criminal Court in June.

Ana’s mother Geraldine gave evidence that Ana was bullied “endlessly” at school and the harassment began the summer before she enrolled.

Trial judge Mr Justice Paul McDermott had made an order during the trial that the school must not be identified.

Last week, the two boys who are now aged 15, were sentenced. Boy A who violently sexually attacked and murdered Ana at an abandoned house has received a life sentence that will be reviewed after 12 years.

Boy B, who lured Ana to farmhouse where she was murdered, was sentenced to 15 years detention with a review after eight years.

The two boys were convicted in June. at Laraghcon, Clonee Road, Lucan on May 14, 2018.

A statement issued to the Leader yesterday by the KWETB said: “KWETB is very mindful of the tragic circumstances of the death of Anastasia (Ana) Kriegel and the anguish endured by her family. In all our dealings with those impacted upon by this tragedy, we seek to be respectful, supportive, and sensitive.
“At this time, KWETB is engaged with a statutory body on matters directly connected with your queries.
“This engagement is conducted in a protected space and KWETB — together with others involved — is obliged to respect confidentiality.”
During the murder trial, Ana’s mother Geraldine gave evidence that Ana was bullied “endlessly” at school and didn’t have many friends.
Speaking from the witness box, Ms Kriegel said teenagers had sent her daughter “awful messages” through social media networks including “very explicit sexual innuendo”.
She added: “I was so concerned about cyber bullying, I took her phone and iPad every night and checked her Snapchat accounts and Instagram.”
Ms Kriegel said Ana had self-harmed once in 2017, when she scraped her arm.
The trial also heard Ana had a number of suspensions from school, for incidents including a fight with another girl and when she painted a fake black eye onto her face.
Meanwhile, in a Virgin Media One documentary ‘The Ana Kriegel Murder: A young life lost’ that aired on Monday night family friend, Social Democrats TD Catherine Murphy said: “There is a feeling that the crime was so awful that it doesn’t fall into the category that you’d normally find crimes that children would commit and I think people had a real problem with that”.