Bullying is much more widely publicized these days compared to when I was growing up. Bullying went on at Nimitz Middle School or Junior High in Odessa,TX, but teachers usually did not get involved. You either learned to stick up for yourself or you kept getting picked on. Parents knew about bullying and like the teachers generally stayed out of conflicts between students unless it really was getting way out of hand.
I read, with interest, the article written by Dylanne Petros of the Roswell Daily Record describing the bullying of a special needs student at Valley View Elementary School. Rachel Watson’s son has been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and has a service dog, apparently, to help defend him from bullies.
Watson decided to sit in on her son’s classes despite principal Mona Kirk’s opposition to her presence including requiring Mom to get a background check! Schools and principals have a lot on their plate and having to monitor and control bullying is time consuming and difficult to control. Also, I doubt the teachers at Valley View enjoy having a parent in their class room all the time.
The weaker kids will always get bullied. The weak animals in the litter sometimes do not survive in the animal kingdom because the mother has enough trouble taking care of the healthy ones. The same is true for the cognitively challenged children or weaker kids of the human animal. At some point, one has to fend for themselves or they will require the constant companionship of parent who will most certainly predecease them!
This writer has nothing but compassion for the challenges faced by Rachel Watson raising her son who is working only at a 7 year old level among fourth grade students. The Good Lord blessed us with healthy and intelligent progeny and we are grateful, but Rachel may be forced to educate her child in a private school as public schools are not that well equipped to police and surveill all the bullying that takes place. Good luck to you Rachel and I hope the resources are available to you in order to improve your kiddo’s life. We did face challenges similar to what you are experiencing when we lived in Odessa, but it was bullying based on jealously rather than weakness and we lived through a hell similar to yours. Most parents have to listen to their kids and decide whether or not to intercede as this Valley View student parent did during an altercation with a teacher. Its damn tough!!
Difficult social issues, such as dealing with bullying in public schools, are complex and require careful and circumspect analysis. Parents are entrusting school with molding the future of their offspring and the School faculty and staff should not betray that trust as in this incident involving an athletic coach disrespecting one of the girls on his team to the extent that the father of the girl beat the hell out of the coach.