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Bullying at Mason Elementary

I first want to say thank you to Fox2 News for covering our story, and thank you to everyone that helped get the word out about Jenelle's bullying situation. It's greatly appreciated.

I also want to point out previous posts on this matter, so you can see how long it has been going on and how hard I have tried to resolve the matter with Mason Elementary. This has been a long journey.

Aug: Started Documenting Bullying, first week of school
Sept: School still refuses to help.
Oct: Little Sister gets bullied
Nov: Jenelle got written up for fighting back
Dec: A Plea for Help – The post that got attention.

MY LATEST VIDEOS

The counselor called me a phony and a fake because I still honored my obligations with volunteering in the classroom, baking five dishes for the teacher's luncheon, donating coats, and donating school supplies when they were running low. That is when I really got upset. There is almost zero parent involvement in that school, and for them to say that about someone that IS trying to be involved is ridiculous. The counselor continued on, and told me the staff actually used those words about me – she was just relaying it.

We also made a video last week:

It is now December 11th and a solution for our problem has been found (possibly), but that does not mean the staff that neglected to protect my daughter should get away with it. The principal, vice principal, and counselor specifically are the ones that I relied on to help us – they failed us instead.

December: The district steps in.

I blogged last week, asking people to report the bullying issue. I thought if a large number of people reported it, something might get done. I was right, in part. The school continued to ignore the issue, except for the counselor calling me – yelling at me that I'm going to make her lose her job, telling me it's silly for Nell to expect NOT to be called a lesbian since WE are lesbians, and more.

Then, someone from the district called me. She said she was reaching out to offer her help. Of course I took her up on it right away!

Bullying at Mason Elementary

I met with her on Monday morning, first thing, and brought Officer Wade with me. I was thankful for his presence, but the school noticed and pointed out that he just wanted to get his foot in the door and push his anti-bullying program, as he didn't really talk about Nell's situation much. It was more about the big picture – which is great – but not why we set up the meeting. Overall, I'm glad he came with me as I think I would have felt outnumbered if he hadn't. It was very intimidating speaking to staff, and trying to trust them, when their staff has failed my daughter so many times already.

The district agreed to send Jenelle to a new school, which is great of them to do! However, that doesn't stop the bullying at Mason Elementary. It will still continue, and the staff will still ignore it, and kids will still feel like crap because of it.

After the meeting with the district, I had an interview with Fox2News. While I'm very thankful that they covered our story, considering NONE of the other news stations responded, I'm disappointed in the spin they put on it. They tried to say we thought it was because of my sexual orientation that Nell was being bullied. While that may have had something to do with it, I'm not convinced that it was the reason she was being bullied. I do, however, feel the reason the staff ignored it is because of the fact that my partner and I are lesbians.

I am very satisfied with what the district has offered as far as protecting Jenelle. I am NOT satisfied in the way Mason Elementary has handled the issue, or the fact that we have to uproot our daughter to move away from the bullies because of it.

Bullying at Mason Elementary

These bullies need help. The staff needs help – and needs to pay for neglecting the children in their school. But the end of the day, I'm most worried about protecting my daughters, and if that means switching schools then that is what we will do – no matter how inconvenient it happens to be.

Schools have to protect their students or there will be more suicides, more school shootings, etc. We, as parents have to stand up and get something done when the school refuses to. Because where the school leaves off, we have to pick up… and in this case it's not a 50/50 partnership… I've had to do 100% of the work to get something done and for that, I'm very disgusted.

SlapDashMom
Sadie Roach is a Lifestyle blogger living in Arizona with her wife, Rachel, and their three daughters. Her passions including traveling, attempting healthy living, and teaching women how to work from home so they can spend more time with their kids.

22 Comments

  1. Ugh! So frustrating! I could tell the spin Fox2 was going for when the anchor gave the lead up “…and up next, a St. Louis girl who was bullied possibly due to her sexual orientation…” You should have been wearing a SlapDashMom shirt during the interview so viewers could find it and read the REAL story! Hang in there. Hugs to the girls. Xoxo

  2. As soon as you said the news was coming over, I had a bad feeling they would make sexual orientation the focal point. But glad she got moved and I hope something is done about the school for the other kids that are still there.

    I too hope Jenelle finds peace at her new school.
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  3. It is VERY frustrating to hear about your struggle! It as if the schools don’t really care if children get bullied. And all the new channels care about are ratings, but I am hoping that someone out there who heard/saw about the news can help. It’s sad when bullying has become the new “norm” when it should be anything but! I am praying for a solution for you and your family!

  4. The news will do anything to make “news.” It’s just sad that they didn’t consider bullying to be enough of a topic and they had to put a different spin on it. Who knows why, but maybe it was because they thought it was because of you an Rachel, when in reality they should have been asking you why you thought it was happening, which very well could have been home life of the bully…not your home life. I’m glad Nell is moving to a different situation and I hope upon all hopes it’s better than this one. I’m also hoping the district will move in on her old school and evaluate their real processes. The way the staff handled the situation was unacceptable and shows they will probably let bullying continue, which means another child (or more like, children) will be the victims again. I know I’ve said it before, but thank you for standing up. Too many parents have no idea what to do, and you sort of paved the way for many.
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  5. It is sad and as a parting gift for the back stabbing staff, I believe I might be spiking those “baked dishes” you so graciously provided for them. Just sayin. ;)

  6. So glad to hear that you have made a little progress. I know your daughters pain in dealing with all of this on a daily basis. I was picked on in school because I have been 6′ 2″ since I was 12 years old. It was bad then, but I know I am a better and stronger person for it now.
    Please tell Jenelle for me to hold her head high. She is a beautiful young lady and she should be proud (I am sure that she is) of the awesome family that she has, especially her Mom who is an incredible role model

    Hang in there, I wish you all the very best.

    1. I was 6′ in middle school and the teasing was horrible! I can’t imagine being 6’2″ and 12.. I’m sorry you had to deal with that. :(

  7. And another thing, I would also write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper about the full story. Hopefully the parents of children going to Mason School either saw the news or someone told them about it and start doing some checking for themselves or at least get ahold of you.

  8. I had tears in my eyes reading this. For your daughter, for other kids being bullied and the thought of my daughters every being bullied. I pray it goes well at the new school.
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  9. Have you checked into getting her bussed into another district? I would call another district and see how that works. I know they do it just not sure the process.

  10. Not for nothing, but this is the way it is. Not the bullying, I mean parents needing to stand up for their kids. It has been my experience from the get go with my children in public school. They will make all sorts of promises to you, but you have got to keep on them and push. I wish more parents would because maybe this wouldn’t happen. But school staff are overworked and underpaid. And please don’t misunderstand me, the way you were treated was atrocious. The fact that your sexual orientation was ever brought into it is despicable. Because in all honesty I don’t care if you prefer to sleep with cows none of that should ever matter to children and has nothing to do with your own children’s sexual orientation. And of course even if they are gay it shouldn’t matter. Clearly the staff there needs more than a few lessons in how to deal with bullying, but they also need to learn a little something about sexual orientation because that counselors statements were just plain ignorant. But I just want you to remember, don’t ever take anything someone tells you about your child’s education at face value. They might say all of the right words and assure you that they want your child to succeed, but the fact of the matter is once they move on they are no longer their problem. They aren’t the ones who have to worry about their successes later in life. That’s our job as parents which is why it’s so important that we stand our ground on all of these issues because it all effects their education. I’m sorry that it took months of terrible bullying for you to come to this realization. The good news is that there are teachers out there still who truly do care and when you find that one you’ll know it. My 10 year old daughter’s 3rd grade teacher was a godsend after an awful 2nd grade year in a different school. To this day I still talk to him about how my daughter is doing. I knew he was going to be a good one when she came home the 1st day of school with a note from him welcoming her to the school and relating to her by telling her he went to a new school when he was in 3rd grade too. It has been nothing short of amazing for her and I think we will all remember him as the one teacher in her life who truly cared about seeing her succeed. It’s a shame they can’t all be like that, but they do exist.
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  11. Beautifully written, sweet lady. I’m so sorry this hasn’t played out the way we had all hoped it would even though so many of us have had your back. Praying for a better situation for your sweet children!

  12. so glad she will be moved that is awful what she had to go thru ,poor thing hopefully the new school will be different

  13. i feel for your kids, i’m so sorry your entire family has had to go through this and i hope the new school will be a safe and happy environment

  14. I am so sorry that your girls are having to deal with such nonsense!!! She is being so brave, saying she just wants it to stop so someone else doesn’t have to go through it too. Thinking good thoughts for all you girls!!!

  15. I am still surprised that the district’s answer is remove Jenelle – not step in and step up to deal with the problem head on… I hope for your family’s sake that all three girls like their new school and things are easier to deal with, but if the district doesn’t help the kids at Mason be better citizens then it fails in the whole scheme of things….
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  16. Thanks for keeping us posted. I might have to do something like this because my 10 yr old son is going through something similar.

  17. Case in point–last Friday in CT. Guarantee you that kid was bullied and picked on along the way. I just can’t believe adults would act like that especially with recent news about bullying. It is a shame. Our attitudes about bullying must change! If adults make it okay, then how can we expect children to stop. So what if you are lesbian? There is no need for your child to be called that in a derogatory way. This angers me every time I read about it. :(
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  18. Bullying is so damaging. When I was in 4th grade, I had just been uprooted to a new town, bc my stepfather abused us. We moved to a small southern town. Where everyone knew eachother, except of course me. And I was so sick, literally sick of school, that my mom put me into counseling. Because she thought I needed to talk about the abuse from my stepdad. And not to downplay that abuse, but when I went to talk to this counselor, all I wanted to talk about was how I was bullied. And she kept telling me I was using that as a cover up for my “real” feelings on the abuse issue. But I am here to tell you as an adult,the abuse issue was bad, but the bullying and isolation at school….that was the real trauma. I am so glad you ahve your daughter away from that place! Never look back. I mean, yes, you want them to fix their issues so that other kids are not bullied. but rigt now, your main concern is getting your daughters settled in elsewhere. I can not believe the way the adults in your situations acted. This proves 100% that parents are the child’s #1 ADVOCATE. WE ARE OUR CHILDREN’S VOICE!!!
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  19. I can’t watch your video because it has audio that isn’t allowed in the US

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