Another Hanoi high school drew comments on the Internet Monday as a video clip showed one of its school girls punch, kick and stamp another.
The victim, Nguyen Thanh Giang, and the attacker, Nguyen Cam Ly, are tenth graders at Le Quy Don High School in Ha Dong District.
Nguyen The Quang, the school vice principal, said Ly beat Giang on January 21 because she thought that Giang had said bad things about her behind her back.
The fight broke out in the corridor, continued in Giang's classroom, was watched by dozens of students, and taped with a mobile phone.
The two minute, 14 seconds clip, posted by a Tran Van Khoa on Monday night, shows that Ly continued to kick Giang on the head and face with her heels even after the girl of smaller stature had fallen. It showed Giang made no effort to fight back but held her head and cried.
The clip was viewed 20,000 times as of Tuesday afternoon. Hundreds of comments decried it. "A terrible torture," exclaimed one. "Not a little less cruel than crime films," said another.
Both girls are going to have their behavior grade lowered by one at the end of the school year and the incident will be noted in Ly's school book, Quang said. Besides academic performance, Vietnamese schools also rank students' behaviors in four levels excellent, good, average and bad.
The school didn't explain why the victim and the attacker received the same punishment.
Quang said the case was "especially serious" and the school leaders had thought about expelling Ly.
But they "decided to give her a chance to correct herself" as she'd done this for the first time out of anger.
Both girls will be expelled if they violated further regulations within the year, Quang said.
He said no students dared to help Giang as they were afraid of being the next victim. The school has figured out there were three students filming the fight, but have not yet managed to find them, he said.
Early this month, a school dropout beat a tenth-grade girl at the Tran Nhan Tong High School at a nearby park, and the fight was recorded in a minute-long video clip on the internet. The victim's alleged fault was to have stepped on the foot of a classmate who happened to be dropout's friend. Both of them had their behaviour grade lowered by one, as the victim was accused of not reporting the case immediately afterward.