School and YOT criticised for not sharing information

    The school and youth offending team attended by a 15-year-old
    boy who went on to kill his 14-year-old classmate failed to share
    information about his self-harming and “aggressive”
    behaviour, a serious case review has found, writes
    Maria Ahmed.

    Alan Pennell, now 16, was jailed for life after stabbing Luke
    Walmsley as he emerged from a classroom at Birkbeck School,
    Lincolnshire, in March 2003.

    In its review published last week, Lincolnshire area child
    protection committee found that Pennell had been harming himself
    with “sharp instruments” in the run-up to the killing
    but was not seen by a school nurse.

    The review said: “If the self-harming had been brought to
    the attention of the school nurse, she could have managed the case
    by offering appropriate support and advice.”

    It also found that a youth offending team which saw Pennell
    after he assaulted a pupil in 2003 was aware of his self-harming,
    but failed to refer him to a health worker.

    The YOT was also rapped for a “regrettable” failure
    to liaise with the school.

    Lincolnshire ACPC concluded that the incident could not have
    been prevented.


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