Sixth-Grade Girls Tormented This Classmate

***READER DISCRETION IS ADVISED***

Posts about real school tragedy, crime and/or events can be upsetting.

As I research crimes occurring at or connected to schools I’ve seen more and more events involving pre-teens.

It saddens me to read about the negative side of public education, but at the same time, I believe it’s vital for everyone who cares about children to be armed with knowledge.

Times are changing. Because schools can no longer be considered safe havens, parents need to be advocates for their children. Schools can’t do everything that is needed; they’re simply underfunded, understaffed and overworked.

BLOG POST #126: This week, I’m sharing research on a specific criminal case involving sixth-grade girls.

Senseless Cruelty

She had everything going for her and everything that makes kids jealous. It was said this 12-year-old was sweet, smart, kind and quiet. And she was a cheerleader.

The bullying began in October—teasing, dirty looks from classmates, name-calling, exclusion and shooing her away from their lunch table.

Then the cyber-bullying began. There were texts, Snapchats, and Instagram posts. They told her she was a loser, said she had no friends.

Her grades began to drop. She suffered from chronic headaches and stomach pain. She begged to stay home from school.

The American Academy of Pediatrics stated in a report on bullying: girls make more suicide attempts, but boys die from suicide at a rate three times higher than girls because they tend to choose more lethal methods, such as firearms.

Make The Bullying Stop

Requests for assistance from teachers, counselors, school administrators and the students’ parents didn’t make the torment stop.

Bullying has always been a major issue for adolescents, but there is now greater recognition of the connection between bullying and suicide,” said Benjamin Shain, MD, Ph.D. in an American Academy of Pediatrics report.

Gone Girl

The ugliness ended the next year in June. After the bullies told her, “Why don’t you kill yourself?” She did.

Did you know in 2007, suicide was the third-leading cause of death for adolescents age 15 to 19 years old? In 2016, suicide rose to the second-leading cause of death.

For helpful information on how to address bullying visit the StopBullying.gov website.

US National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800) 273-TALK (8255)

Worth Mentioning: The young girl’s parents have filed a lawsuit against the school district and its administrators for alleged gross negligence for not responding to their pleas to make the bullying stop.

Here’s my ‘Take Away’ on this case: Bullying is hard to stop without parent cooperation on both sides. Too often a child who bullies learned how at home. And schools are caught in the middle. Parents want the school to intervene but do they have the authority to act on behavior that occurred off campus and not during school hours. The evidence is critical; parents need to have their kids take screenshots of bullying messages and save bullying emails. If the school is unable to remedy the situation—law enforcement will want evidence.

What do you think about this case? Join the conversation on the website. We talk about the sensitive subject of crimes occurring at or connected to schools. Your relevant comments are always welcome on the Research Blog.

Do you know of a school crime you’d like to share? Email me so we can discuss the details.

Thanks for reading and caring about children!

-Robin

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