posted on Apr, 6 2018 @ 05:29 PM
Last year, Ellie (my daughters friend) and my daughter were having trouble with a group of bullies (all boys) at school while Ellie was staying with
us. The ring leader, we'll call him Gus, is Ellie's age but he was held back a year. He is violent and has physically harmed Ellie in the past.
Ellie was mostly the target for this pack of boys and as long as she and her father didn't want to do anything there wasn't much I could do. All of
the major incidents with Ellie did not occur while she was staying with us. Oh, and one more dynamic to add, this boy comes from a very wealthy and
influential family within this small community.
This did start to bleed over to my daughter toward the end of last year. There was a great deal of verbal harassment (nothing sexual) that escalated
into throwing paper stuff in her direction. It happened toward the end of the year. Hoping to ride it out, I told her to ignore it unless it got
physical. Now, my daughter is two grades above Gus, and one year older, but she is 5'2" and 110 lbs. Also, this is not the first boy who has
harassed and bullied her. The last time, when she was in the eighth grade and she was shoved to the ground. Same school (Jr. High and High School
all in the same building), mostly the same teachers and same senior administration (Principal, Superintendent, Guidance Counselor).
At the beginning of this school year, like day 2 of the year, it started again; verbal harassment and throwing things, this time including pencils
and spit balls. I talked to the guidance counselor, explaining there was a history of harassment with these boys and that she was afraid of them.
She blew me off and gave me the standard, boys will be boys. I said that I wanted it as a matter of record though. She said ok. My daughter said
the Principal talked to her, and also said boys will be boys.
So fast forward a few months and this kid Gus throws a shoe and hits her in the back. Hard. Left a small bruise. So, I went to the cops. I
wanted to file an assault charge. The cops said nothing can be done because of jurisdictional issues on school grounds. So, we go to the school and
ask to talk to the Principal. This is where it gets really fun.
We walk in. I didn't say anything confrontational and I was very careful about my tone of voice. The Principal seems to think that is his cue to be
a dismissive and demeaning. Saying that Gus isn't that big (honestly, I had only glimpsed the kid in his truck so I had no idea) and downplaying any
of his behavior. II try this approach for a little bit and realize that conciliatory was only making him think he can walk over the top of me, so I
firm up my tone. And then... he starts yelling. I mean blows his cork and says that all that I want is to have the kid expelled and I won't accept
anything else which isn't true. I lost my temper here and yelled back, telling him I would like him expelled but that was unlikely to happen so we
might have to pull her out her senior year. He said "Go ahead". To which I responded that it was interesting to me that Gus's well being and
education was clearly a greater priority to him than my daughters. And further speculated that I wondered if that had something to do with his being
on the football time (the Principal is also the football coach). Needless to say... More yelling.
At the end of the meeting he apologized but added that he didn't like my body language when I came in the room and it made him "defensive". Even
he knew that he had escalated the situation and he was trying to cover his ass. We go immediately to the Superintendent after this meeting, who also
felt it was assault and it should be something law enforcement deals with. I also told him that the Principal and I have a personality conflict and
that we probably shouldn't be in the same room together.
We needed to get our daughters homework, which we gathered, except for one teacher. He was teaching a class and asked us to come back later. Which
was fine. So we walk out the front office and I tell the ladies there that we will be back in about 40 minutes to get the rest. We come back, come
in the front, I made eye contact with the front desk but didn't say "Hi". Now, I have never, ever signed in to walk into that building. I don't
know anyone who has. You say "Hi Janice" at the most, presumably they write you in, and that's the end of it. We walk down to the math teachers
room and he walks us back to where he can make a photo copy of her work in the teachers lounge. This is right across the hall from the gym. My
daughter says "Look there is Gus". I peer across the hall to get a look at the kid she is pointing out. We are talking and I am trying to figure
out which one he is. Suddenly, there is a big guy next to me (vice principal, I find out later) who asks "Can I help you". I say "No. We are just
waiting on a homework assignment". He stays there until we get her assignment and we leave.
So, they do their investigation and the Principal calls my daughter and at home to get her version of events. This went fine. They decide that he
didn't mean to hit her with a shoe. Surprise. But they still made a no contact order between them. Which is fine. Maybe it was on purpose, maybe
it wasn't but at least there is something on the books and he has to leave her alone now.
For the final meeting to resolve this situation it was the Principal, the guidance counselor and my husband in a room with me on the phone,
conferenced in. At the end of the rundown of their findings, conclusion and game plan for the future, I call the Principal on his behavior in our
first meeting and the guidance counselor on her failure to make a record of the situation. They did not like that, but people weren't screaming at
each other... yet...
Then, the Principal (who is now rather pi$$Y) proceeded to add his own "however" and told me that I did not check in at the office and they saw me
near Gus, and they knew that I was going to assault him, which is why they sent to vice principal to stop me. (Now, bear in mind that at no time did
I intend to confront that child let alone assault him. Nor, was there any indication that I intended to assault this child. So this was pretty
outrageous.) Because they take their responsibility to protect children so seriously, from now on I would only be allowed into the building after
checking in at the office and with an escort of a responsible adult at all times.
I was floored. I told him I would not allow him to imply criminal intent to me with no proof of such. He talked over me. I said it louder. He
started screaming. He said "With your temperament, you are no longer even allowed into the building". I told him that I could see why boys in
this school regularly bully girls since he was modeling bullying behavior. He said "I just can't talk to her anymore" and I was no longer part of
that meeting. Click.
More to come...