A Blue Earth Area student and football player allegedly assaulted by four teammates forced the School Board to hold its monthly meeting in the middle school gymnasium on Monday night.
Filled to a standing room only crowd, board members heard more than a dozen stories of bullying from angry and frustrated persons calling for something to be done.
Dale Hurley, father of the victim, says students, teachers, principals and district officials must change because, “everybody is getting bullied and I believe it’s being covered up.”
“He’s (my son) scared to go to school,” says Hurley. “His friends are scared to tell what happened to him and have been hiding it for several weeks.”
Carla Cardona says her daughter is teased because of her weight and race and her husband Juan says parents of bullied students are told they should move to another district.
“Anybody who says that I think should be fired,” Juan told board members.
Randy Olson says all of his three children and two stepchildren have had to deal with bullies.
Olson says he’s heard of a student who is diabetic being punched in the throat.
“I’m getting sick and tired of this and I’m frustrated a lot with this,” says Olson. “I’m not going to stand for it. None of us are going to stand by anymore.”
Others told the board they believe some students who bully, like athletes, receive special treatment and nothing is ever done to them.
Those who spoke said that teachers, principals and district officials must be held accountable.
Board chair Frankie Bly told the crowd board members would not make any comments because the allege assault is still under investigation.
“We need to take a serious look at how we deal with our children and set examples,” says Bly. “We will take your comments under advisement and will make some changes.”
Bly says he’s disappointed to hear of all the bullying that appears to be going on.
“I taught in the district for 30 years and it wasn’t happening when I retired in ’99,” he says.
Hurley vowed to attend School Board meetings until districts officials address the problem.
“I am never going to quit until we get a solution. My son is not going to hide anymore,” he says.