AUCKLAND, Jan 12 - In Auckland, the Ministry of Education has agreed to override zoning rules to help an autistic pupil move schools because of "almost daily" bullying at his previous school.

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says everyone should be asking why disabled children are being bullied at higher rates than others.

"In this specific case, one child suggested to another that they kill themselves - it doesn't get more serious than this," she said.

"The fact this child has moved schools provides an immediate response to the situation, but what is needed is a change in attitudes towards disabled kids in our schools."

Chief Human Right Commissioner David Rutherford, who wants a proven bullying prevention programme to be introduced in more schools, said the statistics around bullying had to improve.

"The ongoing failure to address a problem that New Zealand children have identified as one of their greatest concerns is a national disgrace," he said. 

The boy's mother, Tracey Hill, told the New Zealand Herald that her son, now 12, was "subjected to almost daily bullying" at his intermediate school last year.

This included being pushed into a wall, being scratched and slapped, having food shoved down his clothes, getting his glasses smashed and being dragged by his feet across a playing field.

AAP