If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know that we’ve had some problems with bullying at Blake’s school. Well, it’s really gotten out of hand, and I am totally at a loss for what to do about it. I’ve reported it to the teacher and to the Principal every time and I think they really have made some efforts to get this under control. There have been several boys who have been sent to the office, had their parents called, or have even been put on suspension for the things they’ve done to him, but that just doesn’t stop them! It’s really baffling. Blake is this sweet kid who just wants to be friends and these other kids (who are all bigger than he is) just nail him for all they are worth and at every opportunity. What the heck is wrong with these kids??
I think I understand at least a little bit why Blake is getting picked on. He’s quite a bit smaller than most of the other kids and he does act very immature a lot of the time. In a lot of ways, he’s more like an 8 year old than a 10 year old and I think kids pick up on that. And he can be VERY persistent sometimes. I get annoyed with him sometimes too, but there’s not an ounce of aggression in him, even though he’s a red belt in Karate and could probably defend himself adequately if he cared to. But he’s just not that way. He’s just not aggressive and he just doesn’t understand why these kids are giving him such a hard time. I don’t either.
We will just get one kid under control and then another one will start up. This one kid has been really bad as you’ll see in this letter I sent to the Principal. In fact, they are trying to get him removed from the school, but the Principal didn’t think the district would do it because he hadn’t used a weapon. Oh gee, let’s wait until it gets that bad, why don’t we?
So this kid totally nailed Blake on the playground the other day. He was kicking him and really going after him for no particular reason so they called in his parents and gave him a two day suspension. BUT, they still let him participate in the 5th grade Science Fair, and his parents let him attend the school’s Skate Night on Friday night. I’ll say it again – after this kid had been made to stay home from school on both Thursday and Friday because of his unrelenting bullying of my son, they LET HIM go to this fun skate night with his classmates on Friday night. Well, I’m sure glad these parents took this punishment seriously! If my kid had acted up that badly to get literally kicked out of school, he sure as heck wouldn’t be out there roller skating with all his friends. In fact, he would be lucky to see daylight for weeks!
So of course, Blake was there and this damned kid takes the first opportunity he can to push Blake down off one of the bouncy things and knocks him into some little girl who immediately starts to cry and her Mom gets all mad at Blake for hurting her. Now, I’m supposed to send my son to school on Monday with this kid in the same classroom with him and it’s obvious that not one thing has changed. I’ll tell you, I am just fit to be tied.
I’m seriously thinking about calling the police and pressing assault charges against this kid. I mean, you’ll see what I mean when you read the letter. This is some pretty serious bullying. The Principal even suggested that I might want to consider moving MY son to another school. I’m like HELL NO! Why do you want to move my kid away from his teacher that he likes and all his friends? Make the other kid move -the one who is breaking all the rules and causing the problem, not my kid who is just trying to do his thing and not bothering anyone. Have you ever heard anything so ridiculous?
Here is the letter I sent to the Principal (the name has been changed to protect the kid, not that I think he’s innocent!)
As you requested, I quizzed Blake about the incident today. It does sound like it was a fairly serious incident. Blake was playing on the playground, pretty much minding his own business when Tom pushed him to the ground. Then when he got up, another boy grabbed him by the shoulders, threw him to the ground and tried to hold him for Tom. He was the one who dared Tom to kick Blake. Blake managed to pull away from the other boy, but Tom caught him and kicked him as hard as he could four different times in the shin and in the thigh. There is a visible bruise on his thigh, but I wasn’t sure about the shin.
While I had the subject going, I decided to have Blake help me make a list of the abuses he has suffered from Tom. I’m glad I did because I’ve discovered quite a few incidents that I was not previously aware of. Even though Tom has been repeatedly warned by everyone in authority at your school, he does not seem to be able to control himself where Blake is concerned. My husband and I are extremely concerned and I think you will be too when you see the extent of what has been going on. I asked Blake why he had not reported all of these incidents and he said that he was afraid of retaliation from Tom if he reported them and that he has just been trying to ignore them. But I think it has gone way past things that can be ignored.
We have reported the previous multiple incidents of Tom kicking Blake in the privates and pinching his chest (Texas Titty Twisters), as well as the repeated taunting and teasing. This kicking seems to be a game he likes to play called “Blake Fishing”. He kicks Blake repeatedly in the shins, then when Blake gets up to defend himself, he kicks him hard in the back of the knee causing him to fall. He has also jabbed him in the head with a pencil and tried to stab him with a stapler. On Monday, he grabbed Blake for no reason and flung him into a puddle of mud. He came home covered in mud and he said the teacher had seen it, but didn’t intervene. There were other boys playing in the mud, so I’m going to assume that she thought they were just playing, but Blake was pretty upset over it.
Here are the incidents we were not aware of: Tom calls him names – stupid, Michael Jackson (apparently trying to imply that Blake is gay), and Fucker. He also frequently flips him off and Blake said that Tom has been “humping” him – rubbing his privates against Blake and moving his hips in a suggestive manner. This is sexual assault, plain and simple. He has also drawn sexually explicit pictures of Blake. Blake said that Tom had drawn pictures of him with his penis exposed and another picture of him with breasts and his penis torn off and held in his hand. I can’t even tell you how shocked I am about that – I am physically sick to my stomach as I write this.
Blake said that his teacher had seen this picture. He had grabbed it from Tom and tore it up and that was when Tom tried to stab him with the pencil and Blake retaliated. Apparently this was a day with a substitute and she sent both boys to “think time”, which I think was a pretty mild punishment for something like that and I’m a little angry that Blake was punished as well since he was only defending himself. Apparently the substitute notified the teacher of the problem and she directed Tom to retrieve the picture from the trash and tape it back together and show it to her. The teacher did send me an E-mail that there had been a “problem” with Tom that day, but I thought she was talking about the kicking “game” and that Blake had retaliated. No one said anything to me about these pictures and Blake was apparently too embarrassed to tell me. I’d like to know where these pictures ended up and what punishment was levied against Tom for this other than sending him to “think time” (turns out he was sent home from school and the picture was shown to his parents – who reportedly were “horrified”, but not enough to call us up and apologize). If they are still available, I would like them to be shown to the School Board and the Nova officer.
Obviously Tom has some serious problems and I don’t think I’m being out of line to say that I don’t want him anywhere near my son. If Blake were a girl, we would be talking sexual harassment charges. If the school board doesn’t think that incidents like this are cause enough to have Tom removed from the school, I don’t know what they could be thinking. I am not about to sit back and wait for my son to be physically or psychologically hurt by this boy. Between this and the numerous other bullying incidents he has experienced since he has been at your school, I just don’t know what to think or what is the right thing to do to protect my child.
Now I’m looking at Monday morning and I don’t even know what to do. Do I send him to school on Monday morning with this kid just waiting in the classroom waiting to start this all up again? Do I keep him out of school until we get this solved? Do I just trust that the suspension has done had an effect on this kid? I wouldn’t think so based on how we was acting at the skating event. Do I go over the Principal’s head and go to someone at the School Board? I don’t even know who to talk to there. Based on everything this kid has done, would it be going overboard to look into pressing charges against him? I don’t even know.
This kid apparently comes from a pretty good family. He’s a nice looking, clean cut kid, and his parents both look like nice people. The Principal said that they were very upset by all this and that they felt really bad for Blake, but I noticed they haven’t bothered to call us and apologize or anything, which I would certainly be doing if my kid had treated another boy so badly. And like I said, I certainly wouldn’t have let my kid participate in either the Science Fair or the Skate Night, so I don’t know if they are taking this all that seriously. I know most parents would. I don’t know, but if someone else has experienced a bullying situation like this, I’d sure like to know what worked for you.
Postscript – Well, we have had somewhat of a happy ending. There was a district hearing and the boy was apparently expelled. Due to privacy concerns, the school couldn’t actually tell us what had happened, or what school he had been sent to, but one of the other teachers confirmed that he was expelled. It kind of makes me sad for the boy and his family, but what can you do? I had to protect my son and this kid obviously had some problems going on. Hopefully this was enough of a wakeup call that these parents will do whatever is necessary to get this boy back on track. Hopefully Blake will have an uneventful rest of the school year.
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