I just found out that a threat was made on Bradley's life at school last week. Bradley (age 13) was was walking down the hall Wed. morning before the first bell of the day. Another boy came up from behind him and said, "Bradley I am going to kill you." He then dug his finger into his jugular vein in the neck and pulled really hard and said, "See Bradley, I can really kill you if I wanted to."

 

I was out of town on a 2 day conference when this happened. When I got home everyone was at church and the rest of the night was hectic so he forgot to tell me about it. He did tell his dad and he (Tom) insisted that he tell someone the next day.

 

Another student (sophomore) went with Bradley to the school counselor. Later that day, my daughter, Stephanie saw the intern student counselor walking with the boy in the hallway. She assumed he was being taken to the guidance counselor's office to talk about the incident.

 

Thursday night, I went to Parent Teacher conferences to pick up report cards for both of my children and saw both the Counselor and Intern student and nothing was said. You would think they would let a parent know about this incident but maybe they assumed Bradley has already told me.

 

It just so happened that I overheard Bradley talking to Stephanie about the incident and how he was glad he went and talked to someone about the incident. I talked to Bradley and he said he was still scared. He said, he didn't think it was fair that he had to worry about getting hurt at school. He said, "Mom, I go to school to learn, not to be hurt by others."

 

I asked Bradley what happened with this boy before the incident. This boy is in Study Hall with Bradley. On Tuesday, he was talking to Bradley and Bradley told him, "Please be quiet, I'm trying to work." Then the boy buried his head in his arms on top of his desk for the rest of the study hall. This is the last session of the day.

 

Maybe I am over-reacting but I am very uneasy about this. I think this is a very serious threat....and it bothers me that the school Counselor did not mention it to me Thursday night.

 

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Lisa, in no way are you over reacting. As a teacher, I know that this must be addressed IMMEDIATELY with the school PRINCIPLE...NOT a counselor. My daughter recieved a text message (no physical violence actually done) threatening her life and I took it to the principal. THey talked to the boy and found out from his middle school that he had a history of violent threats. Nothing was done except to tell him if it happened again he would be expelled. IT DID HAPPEN AGAIN...and he was expelled last year, but is back this year. I have not heard of other incidence this year and hope this boy has gotten needed help.
In this day and age, you CANT over react about something like this whether it was to a healthy child or not! This has nothing to do with DMD, but the safety of all the children at your school. The mere fact that this boy put his hands on Bradley while making the threat makes it even more serious to me!
I would escort Bradley to school Monday and visit the Principle. It should have been done the day after the event in my opinion. If they don't do anything, I would take this along with the other incidents that have occured at your school and go to the School Board....but that is me. I just think to much has gone on and is always brushed under the rug and I suspect it is not only the event about Bradley that are!
Good luck!
I feel terrible that I didn't know anything about it until last night. Bradley told me he was sorry he forgot to tell me. He said he thinks the counselor didn't tell me because it may be confidential I DO NOT THINK IT IS CONFIDENTIAL IF IT INVOLVES MY SON AND IS A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH but that is just his assumption as to why they didn't talk to me about it. I am glad Bradley decided to tell someone but I am still worried. There have been too many school shootings (even in small schools like Cobden) not to have a bad feeling about this. I plan to take Bradley to school Monday, stop in the office and talk to the principal. I am going to start out by saying, I want to know my son is safe in this school. I plan to tell him I want the threat to be taken seriously and I want the boy to be watched closely. It is my hope that he will already know, and that the counselor would have already shared this with the principal.
I am not up on this kkind of thing in your state but i belive a student did something of the same here in Indiana and they ended up with charges in court on him with touristic treating not sure of the whole story I am not a big beliver in the tv news as they are bad about just telling what they want the general public to know hope you get this cared for real soon
Any person with a disability has a special protected status under the law. What the bully did is aggravated (made worse) by the fact that he chose your son to bully.

IMHO, the principal needs to let you know what is happening. If the school won't act decisively then make a police report. The bully (and his parents) needs a strong message and so does the school. Ask for a psych eval on the bully. You won't see the results, but it will create a paper trail on the bully.

Zero tolerance for this kind of behavior. Enroll your son in a self defense class for people with physical
disabilities so he feels empowered to respond to such cowards.
I was thinking too that this kid might need a psych eval. just to make sure he is stable. You just never know what could be going through his mind and what he might do next. I don't know the boy's age but he is in 7th grade. Bradley is in 8th grade but with the DMD, he is physically vulnerable regardless of being older. There were actually 3 boys older than Bradley who convinced him to go to the school counselor after his dad also told him to tell someone. For Bradley, who is quiet, it takes a lot of courage for him to go to an adult. We are working on a self advocacy goal this year.

I think the self defense class for disabled would be good. I wonder where I can find such a class. I will look into it.
1. Did the older boys witness the bullying? If so, they need to tell the principal as well. If they did witness it AND told Brady to report it, it may be an even meaner situation than you thought. Kids down peddle stuff to their parents - protecting us, sigh.

2. Your police department, victim's advocate arm of the police department, local ARC or similar contacts might lead you to one. If there is not one, ask one of the groups to organize one. Try to get groups of parents together who have kids with disabling conditions. The issues are the same. Not all techniques will work for all, but some will always work: a whistle or small air horn activated by a light touch, yelling. flashing lights - the principle is anything that attracts the attention of others is the enemy of bullies and criminals.

The bigger problem is getting people who are told so often they are less or worthless to feel entitled to DEMAND respect from others. That comes from hanging around with other people with disabling conditions who have already learned that lesson - paralyzed veterans, members of disability advocate groups. One phrase I particularly like is "nothing about us without us", that is, we are just as important as you are so stop acting like we are less than you.

Let us know what you find out in your community. With our young people living longer and more independently, they will encounter these issues more and more. I like to think this is where civil rights and disability rights intersect. You may find some allies in this bullying experience among other minority groups. They may also have some "I am just as important as you are" classes. Bullies prey on those who feel they are less not on those who thing they are equal. Brady needs to absorb the idea that he can prevent most bullying by projecting that sense of entitlement to equal treatment.

Now if you could get the school and parents who think their kids don't have disabilities to think and act that way - but that is millenia away.
The older boys did not witness it. Bradley told them about it. They ride the bus with him. Bradley said, it happened first thing in the morning after he got off of the bus and was walking down the hallway to his locker. He said other students were walking in the hallway but he didn't know if anyone else saw what happened.

I'd like to know how the counselor and intern counselor handled the situation. Since Stephanie saw the intern student walking with the boy on Thursday, it sounds like he was talked to. But I wonder did he get a detention? I think he probably should have. Were his parents called? I would think they should have been called. And I do believe we should have been called. At least the counselor could have pulled me aside at the Parent Teacher conference to tell me about it. I was face to face with her for at least 5 minutes and all I got was small talk.

I appreciate your input on how to check into the defense class and the things that can be done for protection.
Lisa, Was Sky with Bradley? Don't know that that would have made a difference, but I am sure it would have given Bradley an added sense of security. Just curious....
Oh...and for that, at our high school, he would have gotten WAY more than detention!
Lori, he is not taking Sky to school anymore. The night before the first day of 7th grade (he is in 8th grade now), he asked if he had to take Sky to school with him. He said he thought it would be too hard to walk holding onto Sky and holding whatever he needed to take back and forth to classes. The principal told me that first day, anytime Bradley decides to bring Sky that will be fine, but he still seems content just leaving Sky at home. I can see how having her there might help him when it comes to bullies. Bradley also thinks Sky draws a lot of attention, attention that Bradley doesn't want.
What you described is an automatic expulsion in our district - for up to 180 days.

Get the school policy or student handbook (it's probably online) and take the incident, with the written district policy, to the principal. If you don't get satisfaction, go to a school board meeting and speak during the call to the public with the same material.
I talked the principal. He was not there when I arrive this morning. Normally he is but he had to drive a bus route this morning. He is going to talk to Bradley and pin point where he was in the hallway. They have cameras in the school and he is going to look for the incident. He said it is very important that students are safe in the school and he will be watching this boy closely.

He acknowledged that anything could happen even in a small school and we couldn't be too cautious. He said, "I'm sure schools like Columbine never expected such an incident as what happened there." He was glad I brought this to his attention.

I really hope they find the incident on camera. I didn't even think about the cameras being in the school. I just don't know if the positioning of cameras pick up everything.

He didn't say anything and I didn't think to ask but my assumption is that he didn't know anything about this before I brought it to his attention. I think that should have automatically been passed on (not just to me, or the boy's parents, but to the principal).
The principal reviewed the video with Bradley and they were able to view the incident from behind but unable to see what the boy did with his hand. There are 4 cameras in that hallway and so they will be reviewing the other videos to see what happened from the front and sides. You could tell that it was the boy Bradley named. From behind it shows his hand going up over Bradley's shoulder. Bradley said that movement ended with the boy digging his finger deep into the front of his neck, grabbing what he thinks was the jugular vein and pulling it outward really hard. I hope they can view it and see exactly what the boy did.

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