Tragic teenager Aimee Wellock moved to a Cullingworth school to escape bullies, but was instead picked on by fellow pupils for nearly two years, her former head teacher has admitted.

Dr Tony Rickwood, of Parkside School, said Aimee suffered at the hands of "two or three" individuals from 2003 until earlier this year.

Last Friday, three teenage girls -- none of whom attend Parkside -- were found guilty of being responsible for the death of Aimee after a two-week trial at Leeds Crown Court.

A jury found Claire Carey, 18, and two girls aged 17 and 15, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, guilty of manslaughter and affray. A 15-year-old boy was cleared of both charges.

The girls will be sentenced on October 19. During the trial, statements from Aimee's classmates were read out in court, criticising the school, claiming it had done little to prevent the bullying.

Dr Rickwood said Aimee had moved to Parkside School to avoid being bullied, but during her third year at the school had been victimised by other students.

He told the Keighley News: "She did not want to go to the local school and she was successful in her application here.

"In year nine, problems had started because of the condition she suffered. Two or three individuals were involved a lot of the time."

In February 2005, Aimee missed around a fortnight of schooling due to the bullying. Dr Rickwood met with Aimee's parents, Alan and Jackie, on several occasions to try to resolve the problems.

"I think they initially felt some of the strategies were not as effective as they could have been," he said. "We met in January and February and we really felt the incidents with the known girls in the school had diminished. Aimee had a clear focus and was very keen to do her GSCEs and then go to dance school.

"She was looking forward to the future with optimism and enthusiasm."

Three of Aimee's bullies -- who still attend Parkside -- were temporarily excluded from the school because of incidents involving the Allerton, Bradford, youngster.

Dr Rickwood also conceded the bullying did affect Aimee.

"Some of the bullying, even if only name calling, created a level of stress. None of us knew of her true physical condition," he said.

"But the level of stress she suffered on the night she died would have been far beyond anything she experienced at school."

The students involved at Parkside were in no way connected with those individuals outside of the school who perpetrated the attack on Aimee and her friends."

However, the head teacher defended the school's reputation and emphasised the importance the school placed on staff and pupils respecting each other.

"All schools, all social areas will have some elements of disrespectful behaviour," he said. "We try to ensure all 1,200 students are dealt with as appropriately as possible. Our whole community is based on the concept of respect."

In a recent Ofsted report, the school was commended for providing "a good quality education to students in a safe and caring environment, where their achievement, progress and personal development are at the heart of the school."

Alan and Jackie Wellock also praised the way Dr Rickwood had dealt with the problems.

"On one occasion, she was pushed around by a group of girls outside the science block and the last time she was pulled off a chair after a girl told her if she didn't get off, she would break her legs so she couldn't dance," said Mrs Wellock.

"That really upset her and she was off school for a couple of weeks in February. We went to see the head, who was fantastic. He got the parents of the two girls responsible involved and we didn't have any more trouble from them."