Bullying is not a new phenomenon, but in the past decade, it has become an epidemic.
It’s psychologically scarring for the kids who are being verbally and even physically abused by their peers, day in and day out.
But the pain doesn't stop when children leave school grounds. Abuse continues online. According to StopBullying.gov, "about 49 percent of children in grades 4–12 reported being bullied by other students at school."
It's not your imagination; almost every night on the news, there’s another story about a kid being bullied, and often, how the school is turning a blind eye.
Fourth-grader Nasir Andrews of Bellevue, Washington, was bullied all year long. But after multiple attempts of reporting the racially-charged and physically-threatening bullying to teachers and school officials with no results, Andrews took matters into her own hands. Turning to social media, she created a now-viral video to bring attention to her cause.
Andrews told KIRO 7 News, "A student called me 'Nutella,' and I told my after-school teacher and she said it wasn't racist and she made me write the definition of racist.”
Think about that for a second. A teacher made her define racist, but couldn't — or chose not to — recognize it herself.
The young girl's parents, Chantey and Travis Andrews, said that their daughter has been pushed and even choked. They find it extremely frustrating that the school is doing nothing to help. Not one single adult has lent a helping hand.
“With so many things happening, our fear is there is a culture that has been established at the school where it is almost OK for the children to exercise different forms of treatment and bullying and harassment. And there’s not a conversation being had with them saying, ‘No, this is unacceptable,’” Andrews's mom noted.
Possibly one of the most alarming aspects of this case is that the district did investigate their daughter's reports and categorized them as "unfortunate peer-to-peer interaction."
Andrews's father added, “I wish they would have paid more attention to the bigger picture. I think a lot of the incidents were taken individually and handled individually and if it was more of a broader picture, and they were able to connect more of the dots, we would have probably stopped this earlier in the year.”
Watch more about her story below.
Nasir is one of about 40 black students at Ardmore Elementary School, which has large populations of Hispanic, Asian, and Indian students. Her parents are currently finding a new school for their daughter to attend once the new year begins in the fall.
Thumbnail Credit: Flickr, David D