Campaigners have voiced fears after children broke into a school farm in Kent, killing and hurting animals at the end of last month.
Animal rights charity PETA has sent humane education materials to primary schools in the area in an attempt to prevent future instances of violence.
According to reports, four boys broke into Westlands School’s farm, killed 11 chickens by stamping on their heads, and beat a pregnant pig until she could no longer walk.
The incident was captured on CCTV.
According to a PETA spokesperson: “Our educational materials are designed to help children of all ages recognise the importance of compassion and empathy for all living beings.
“Our letters to the schools also point out that experts in mental health and law enforcement consider the callous disregard for life and desensitisation to suffering evidenced by all forms of cruelty to animals to be red flags for other kinds of violence.
“The US Federal Bureau of Investigation uses reports of crimes against animals to analyse the threat potential of suspected and known criminals.
“Experts agree that it is the severity of the behaviour – not the species of the victim – that matters.”
PETA Director Elisa Allen added: “PETA wants to prevent any further acts of cruelty.
“Instilling empathy in children and teaching them to respect others, human and non-human, is vital.
“The safety of the whole community depends on it.”