North Walsham High School head defends bottle flip challenge ban

The Atrium at North Walsham High School.PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

The Atrium at North Walsham High School.PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: © ARCHANT NORFOLK PHOTOGRAPHIC

The headteacher of a school which banned pupils taking part in the bottle flip challenge has claimed action was needed after the craze spiralled out of hand.

North Walsham High School head Neil Powell. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

North Walsham High School head Neil Powell. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

North Walsham High has threatened detentions for children found taking part in the game, which involves throwing a half-full plastic bottle in the air with the aim of making it land upright.

Head teacher Neil Powell said the game had been taken to a more extreme level in recent weeks.

'Students were using bigger bottles and throwing them over longer distances,' said Mr Powell.

'In the last week before the ban, bottles were being thrown from windows and up and down two or three floors - that is unacceptable.

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'The decision was taken after two pupils suffered minor injuries when they were hit on the head.

'Year 7 pupils have had their lunches knocked off the dining table and felt intimidated by older students. Parents would not allow their children to do this eating meals at home.'

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He added: 'When four of five children were taking part on a bench outside it was not a problem, but when larger crowds get involved using bigger bottles it got out of hand.

The health and well-being of pupils and staff and quality of learning are what is important.'

A message posted on the Spenser Avenue school's website earlier this week, said: 'Following a misunderstanding today, we would like to confirm that the 'Bottle flip challenge' is not permitted in school. Students caught doing this will have an immediate C3 detention. Many thanks.'

The warning has attracted criticism on social media, with people taking to Facebook to comment on the school's stance.

Molly Meyer posted: 'How pathetic! Not sure how that can be classed as a detention worthy offence?'

Jenna Self posted: 'I can't tell whether this is a joke or not. Why on earth would something so simple be banned?!'

The challenge became an internet sensation after a video was posted in May of US high school student Mike Senatore performing tricks at a talent show. Since then people have been trying to outdo each other, landing their bottles on surfaces including walls and windowsills.

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