TWO schoolboys were attacked by a man on their way to school in the morning.

The incident, which took place in Basildon on Friday, saw the man approach the pair from behind and snatch one of the boys’ school bag.

He shook the school bag around in what appeared to be an attempt to empty it, before trying to punch the other boy.

The thug, thought to be aged in his 30s, then left the scene casually, pushing a bike along, while the terrified teenagers ran into their school - Woodlands School, Basildon - which they were less than a minute away from.

A spokesman for Essex Police said: “We are investigating an incident in Woodland Approach, Basildon on Friday, November 8, at around 8.10am.

“Two boys were approached by a man described to be in his 30s of medium build, bald, and wearing a red jumper and dark jeans.

“The man grabbed one of their bags and shook it, he also attempted to punch the other boy. He was seen walking away pushing along a white bike.

“Anyone with information is asked to call us on 101, quoting crime reference 42/179069/19 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”

Several parents of Woodlands School claim to have not been notified of the incident and shared their disappointment on social media. The school didn’t deny this but did say: “Parents were contacted”.

Samantha Pennell, posted: “Although both my sons go there I didn’t get a text.”

Donna Turner, added: “No emails, no nothing sadly. I honestly thought we would of got something home.

“I’m a little disgusted.”

David Wright, headteacher at Woodlands School, said: “Within 10 minutes of being told of the incident a member of the senior leadership team followed the person until they were well away from the school and our pupils.

“The parents were contacted and advised of the situation and call was also made to the police”.