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Ex-Student Breaks Into Melbourne Private Boys' School To Protest Toxic Masculinity

Ex-Student Breaks Into Melbourne Private Boys' School To Protest Toxic Masculinity

James Robinson says he snapped and wants the 'patriarchal culture' he witnessed during his time at St Kevin's to stop.

Stewart Perrie

Stewart Perrie

A former student has broken into his old Melbourne high school to stage a dramatic protest against toxic masculinity.

James Robinson hopped into the ground of St Kevin's private boys' school and set his blazer alight.

He was prompted to act after a fellow St Kevin's College former student, AFL player Jordy De Goey, was recently arrested for allegedly assaulting a woman on a dance floor in New York City.

The school has attracted headlines over the past few years for problematic behaviour, which includes boys singing a controversial song in full uniform while on a public tram, allegations of teachers being involved in inappropriate sexual conduct, and calls to fix the culture that helps promote a toxic learning environment for the male students.

These headlines, combined with De Goey's arrest, sparked Mr Robinson to draw a line in the sand.

He wrote on Instagram: "I broke into the school yesterday to protest. Something snapped in me this time. The patriarchal culture I saw inside the school gates burst out and made its way to New York.

"St Kevin's is a bubble where privileged young men can rehearse oppression without consequence, before graduating with flying colours into public. A place where 'locker room talk' exists openly in hallways and classrooms."

The photographer then alleged he had witnessed 'revenge porn against girls from sister schools' as well as horrifying instances where gay or trans students and teachers were threatened or humiliated.

"I saw a system designed to let young boys think they can do anything, assault anyone, and get away with it," he added.

"This protest takes my healing full circle. I burn my blazer not in anger, but in hope for regeneration. I kiss my partner not in spite, but to bring love back to the only place that ever taught me shame," he concluded.

Robinson said he has previously contacted the school to urge them to do better and is yet to see proper results of that request.

The principal of St Kevin's, Deborah Barker, told the ABC that they are all ears on how to improve the overall behaviour of the students.

"I think James can teach us and help us as other students can, there are some wonderful opportunities for students to bring forth their stories," she said.

The headmaster added in a letter to parents: "Most importantly I want James to know that we care for him and acknowledge his courage for speaking out. James and I have already been in communication and we plan to meet shortly."

The Herald Sun reports an independent review of the culture at St Kevin's revealed 'sexism and misogyny are still clearly an issue at the elite Catholic school'.

Featured Image Credit: James Robinson/Instagram

Topics: Australia