Son bullied

mother of victim speaks out

She has spent more than $15,000 in the past year on medical treatment for her son, a victim of bullying.

And with seemingly very little cooperation from authorities to bring the bullies to justice, a St Thomas mother is at her wits end.

The woman, who requested anonymity, told Barbados TODAY that since her son entered secondary school last year, he has been the victim of “persecution and torture” at the hands of other students.

At 12 years old, her son has suffered a range of illnesses, including soft tissue damage and post-traumatic stress.

When he entered a rural secondary school last year, the aspiring veterinarian/architect only spent two weeks there due to bullying.

“The first Friday he came home, he had a boot print behind his left shoulder, his shirt was in a state, and when I asked him why he was in such a condition he said to me that this child had cuffed him in his ribs and kicked him in his back. So I went to the school the following Monday and spoke to the deputy head at the time and told him that I hope I wouldn’t have to come and deal with such issues anymore,” she said.

However, a week later, her son came home complaining of being taunted, adding that students had thrown rocks at him and tried to push him in front of a moving bus.

“The following day, a boy hit him in his back with a cricket bat,” she added.

The mother said that as soon as she was notified of the incident involving the cricket bat, she went to the school, only to learn that same evening that her son was vomiting and had diarrhea.

“My son was severely dehydrated and he was going delirious,” she said, adding that at one point, while she was speaking to her son, he thought he was speaking with his class teacher.

The mother said the principal of the school was dismissive whenever she sought to find out who was responsible for bullying her child.

“I had to be running around with him. It was a lot of pain and torture and he could not go to school. He missed the entire term,” she complained.

The mother said she has also been to the police several times.

She was successful in getting her son transferred to another secondary school, and thought that their nightmare would be over. However, that was not the case, as he reportedly continued to suffer abuse at the hands of other students.

The mother said she had witnessed him being bullied at that school several times, when she went to collect him .

“I complained for the instances I saw. Some of them I complained to the guidance counsellor about, as well as the headmaster,” she said. “You want to tell me all these things happening and the teachers are not seeing or knowing anything?”

The mother of three said her son was not known to be a troublemaker, adding that the incident of bullying intensified with one boy “pulling a knife on him, demanding money”.

“The same person continued to hit him during the week and in the following week injured his right hand,” she said, adding that she met with the parents of the child, the principal and the police. “The boy was supposed to be suspended for two weeks. As far as I know, he remained on the school compound every day until school was dismissed.”

The mother said the doctors suggested her son was suffering from post-traumatic stress last summer.

“He got up blind in one eye about a week or so before school was scheduled to start,” she said. “He got back his vision about two weeks later, but when I mentioned about going back to school again, the boy broke out with a hundred degree fever, diarrhea and vomiting.”

She said that since then, she had spoken to a principal at a private school, explaining all that was going on in an effort to get him enrolled there.

“My child can’t be walking about the place like a hostage,” she said.

However, the mother said, a senior education officer had made it clear that the Ministry of Education would not be paying for any private school.

“The actual victims are not getting any justice, but the bullies have all the right
. . .” she complained. “My child earned a spot in Government school and he should have been able to attend the school freely, just like anybody else.”

Expressing the view that bullying was rampant in schools, the mother said she wanted authorities to take the complaints and reports of bullying more seriously.

“Bullying is a serious problem and it is not necessarily being handled with the seriousness that it should be handled with at these schools, even with the police or the ministry. At the end of the day, I guess they have to wait for somebody to get killed and then say ‘cuh dear; oh, sorry’. But I am not dealing with that,” she said.

“Parents need to take their children’s complaints seriously and if you have a child that you can see is obviously being tormented by others, don’t sit down home and take it. No matter how insulting and disrespectful these people behave, make sure you go and do what you need to do for your child, because at the end of the day nobody can replace your child.

“I am not saying to tear off your clothes and behave bad. But sometimes it is very hard not to lose your temper, especially when you go to legal authorities and they try to push you around,” the mother added.

Recalling an incident of bullying which contributed to the death of a student, the mother feared that her son or other children could end up in a similar situation if stamping out the scourge was not treated as priority.

“You have big officials sitting down there and covering for bullies. But when, as a parent, you go and do what you need to do, you become the worst thing. You’re supposed to let them do your child as they please and you sit down and take it with a happy smile? Those expectations are just utterly ridiculous,” she said.

marlonmadden@barbadostoday.bb

44 Responses to Son bullied

  1. Virtuous Makeba
    Virtuous Makeba December 3, 2016 at 12:15 am

    This has to stop this is not good at all!!!

    Reply
  2. Jada Jameson
    Jada Jameson December 3, 2016 at 12:16 am

    No wonder kids are shooting up schools. Nobody listening to his cry of help,

    Reply
  3. Michelle Griffith
    Michelle Griffith December 3, 2016 at 12:17 am

    Hmmmmmm,this is so sad,and to think the mother is getting no help from the schools or the MOE.
    I would of lost it long time.

    Reply
  4. Karen Sobers
    Karen Sobers December 3, 2016 at 12:20 am

    Monkey knows what tree to climb. I have 3 and wish wish someone would

    Reply
  5. Dionne Trotman
    Dionne Trotman December 3, 2016 at 12:33 am

    God don’t like ugly…

    Reply
  6. Jean PG Smith
    Jean PG Smith December 3, 2016 at 12:37 am

    This is wrong but dont sound right

    Reply
    • Cheryl GaulBourne
      Cheryl GaulBourne December 3, 2016 at 1:28 am

      What don’t sound right it happens all over the world exactly as she claims

      Reply
    • Jean PG Smith
      Jean PG Smith December 3, 2016 at 1:31 am

      Exactly as she claims
      I will be prayin for her child and all the children that getz picked on
      When mad people tell they kids to hit if they get hit
      It was bad parentin
      Every good got a bad
      Every bad got a good

      Reply
  7. Cherylann Bourne-Hayes
    Cherylann Bourne-Hayes December 3, 2016 at 12:40 am

    Sad sad sad. I would have taken care of every single one of them myself.

    Reply
  8. Kim Kim
    Kim Kim December 3, 2016 at 12:48 am

    I would handle each one myself… this foolishness gotta stop

    Reply
  9. Rawle Maycock
    Rawle Maycock December 3, 2016 at 12:57 am

    All of that whilst growing up thought me how to fight back!

    Reply
  10. Peggy Stoute Morin
    Peggy Stoute Morin December 3, 2016 at 2:10 am

    Maybe they’re waiting for another Shemar.

    Reply
  11. Laurene Calixto
    Laurene Calixto December 3, 2016 at 3:17 am

    ! The primer of education need look this and made work for better school ! So sad here not only this boy pas for this but many adders children! All word all work for bring the children respect at school and teacher need to help too!!!

    Reply
  12. Idan December 3, 2016 at 3:58 am

    I think that something is wrong here. Is it possible that this child could be the instigator in these bullying reports an then cant take the retaliation. Sometimes it is best to hear the story form all three sides.
    i have dealt with these kind of situations before only after you start the counselling that you realise that the victim was infact the instigator who could not take the retaliation that was dissed out in defence.

    Reply
  13. Nursey December 3, 2016 at 5:52 am

    The day that your son retaliate when he had enough and kill one of them they would wanna carry he up Dodds. Some of the authorities here does take things too lightly. I know nobody ain’t bullying mine.

    Reply
  14. Lennox hewitt December 3, 2016 at 6:12 am

    If that was a someone big in society son it would not end so i hope he would remember each one when he finish school .

    Reply
  15. Man of valour December 3, 2016 at 6:18 am

    Good morning, sad sad woman pray for grace, that’s your son and other children. If you have the money , enroll him in karate classes and trust me. No one won’t try to harm him or go to the school and behave ghettoish and have a policeman with you.

    Reply
  16. Warning ⚠ December 3, 2016 at 6:50 am

    What a terrible indictment of Barbados’ education system. This mother sounds desperate for a solution and no help is forthcoming. I’ve heard so many tales of this type of thing happening in the secondary school system. What kind of future are we marking out for ourselves when rampant bullies are permitted to torture and terrorize others? These bullies grow into psychotic adults with so much anger and bitterness – God help Bim.

    Reply
  17. Jeff December 3, 2016 at 7:32 am

    When I was in school we also had bullies but we also had very tough teachers who thought it was their job to not only teach but to protect the students under their care. I remember teachers who went as far as to follow certain bullies around at lunchtime to ensure that they behaved.
    Now that mindset sadly doesn’t exist anymore.

    Reply
  18. Lisa Welch December 3, 2016 at 7:56 am

    The schools does nothin when the children complains to them an then we as the parents get ridicule if we have to take matters into our own hands..i have been havin the same problem for the las three years

    Reply
  19. Phil December 3, 2016 at 8:15 am

    Was this matter reported to the police? Are the authorities including the school and the Ministry of Education intent on taking corrective action? How about taking legal action against the parents of the abusers? In some countries these bullies would be terminated. This is a life here man, a young child who deserves the best he can get. WAKE UP BARBADIANS, YOU’RE FIFTY YEARS OLD. Mr. Minister of this responsibility, Please lead from the front.

    Reply
  20. Sheron Inniss December 3, 2016 at 8:27 am

    I read this and cried. Shame on the school authorities. I remember doing a pilot class and bullying was discussed. The son of one of the students was being bullied and I said I would fight back. One lady was outraged at my stance, but the father thanked me. I do not like confrontations but sometimes that is all you have left when those ***** in authority renege on their duties. I shall remember this mother and son and hold them up in pray to God.

    Reply
  21. The Negrocrat December 3, 2016 at 8:47 am

    Teach him to defend himself. In only a few weeks be would have them shivering when they see him.

    Reply
  22. Janel Howell December 3, 2016 at 8:49 am

    This needs to be dealt with. Do not wait for another child to die please or somebody get ignorant and a whole family gone. I made no sport when it came to my child. Get an attorney and get to court.

    Reply
  23. Donna December 3, 2016 at 8:53 am

    I read this with tears in my eyes, it is so painful, the authorities need to do something urgently before this child beome another statistic.

    Reply
  24. Joy December 3, 2016 at 9:10 am

    The mother reports that her child was bullied at one school, she had him transferred to another school where he was also bullied. Clearly school officials and/or the Ministry would have facilitated the transfer. The mother needs to understand and address whatever there is about her son that makes him a target for bullies and the child needs to learn to defend himself.

    Reply
    • Sha-Nae Moses December 5, 2016 at 1:06 am

      I agree with you, there has to be something about the boy that makes him a target. However, this does not make the bullying right. For whatever reason, he should never be bullied at all. Nothing justifies the physical, psychological and emotional trauma that bullying inflicts on a person but the mother needs to focus on her son and what about him could be attracting bullies. Very little has been said about the son except that he an aspiring vet/architect known to give no trouble. So why is he experiencing bullying at various schools and so severely. Something is not being said. Either way, I hope it stops because he should not have to be enduring that. He should be able to go to school happily every day and return likewise every day.

      Reply
  25. Saundra December 3, 2016 at 9:10 am

    Send your son to self-defense classes.

    Reply
    • Coralita December 3, 2016 at 10:05 am

      Agreed!!!!!

      Let him come back and whop those brutes.

      Reply
  26. Sophia December 3, 2016 at 9:13 am

    Really really sad, not looking forward to my son going to school sigh….

    Reply
  27. Latoya nurse December 3, 2016 at 9:35 am

    I agree with you a 100%. I am going through the same situation an my son is in primary school. The bullies get off scot free and the victims being punished. These school teachers act like they dont have basic common sense to deal with these situations. I feel like when these teachers do there training they need to teach them to handle these type of situations. Teachers are being enrolled very young some dont even have children so they dont have the experience to deal with kids sometimes they act like they dont care about your child. They are just there for a paycheck its not like when i was going to school they would go above an beyond. When you go an make complaints to the ministry they do nothing because some of these teachers are they friends. What i realise we as parents have to take matters into our own hands even if it means involving the law and teaching your child self defense.

    Reply
  28. Jeff December 3, 2016 at 10:20 am

    Look we need to wake up at 50. This is a very serious matter, a bit of fun probably gone too far. Someone must take responsibility, is the head teacher sleeping, who has responsibility for the children while at school, It has to stop if it means the police making an arrest. This child has to be protected in this educational environment. Can charges be brought against anyone.

    Reply
  29. Samantha December 3, 2016 at 2:41 pm

    So the ministry made arrangements for the springer student, but can’t accommodate a student that is being verbally and physically bullied, with incidents that involved the police?

    Reply
  30. Michelle December 3, 2016 at 4:50 pm

    I have a friend who is going through the same thing with her daughter. 13 girls beat that child. Had stitches. The headteacher don’t care.the Ministry say them can do nothing. Police int working either.
    What is a parent to do? What if that child do what she thinks is best.
    We in Barbados takes bullying too easy. Something must be done. In glad I didn’t raised no fools.

    Reply
  31. Crime Prevention is the Key December 3, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    The MOE for years have been trying to deal with bullying and sad to say its not working. My kids have never had these issues but it breaks my heart.
    We Barbadians are reactive and not proactive and security measures have to be implemeneted to safe guard chikdren at school. The school & MOE are responsible for the safety of your kids everyday and Principles should not be concern about stigma as i know these issues and others auch as drugs and sex are swept under the rug so secondary schools keep thier “squeaky clean appearance.”
    Its time for security scanners, bag checks and property inspections for hidden illegal weapons and drugs. To do this the MOE may feel these security implementations will look as a sign of defeat but they have already lost and its time to step up the fight against crime and bullying.

    Reply
  32. mahadtwy em re December 3, 2016 at 6:23 pm

    One of the things you have to overstand is that these people need to be made known. ..you cannot expect to hide names or incidents because there will be no full justice with those people going unmentioned. ..If you are going to make a complaint then make it public record for the record on the record. .bullies should be stopped. ..the teachers who have ignored your complaints should also be put on blast. ..do not cover up for these demons who attack and bully your seed who you carried for 9 months and nurtured. ..they the bullies have no rights over your son and those teachers who deny your son just treatment are worse than the bullies. ..it is justifiable at law to take out class action lawsuits against all of them for creating a stress and trauma filled psychological mind set in your sons mind. ..they the bullies need their asses beat. .and then let them get psychiatric treatment. ..

    Reply
  33. Lorraine December 3, 2016 at 8:13 pm

    Teach your child self defense. You cannot continue fighting his battles.. Enroll him in self defense classes which would also examine why he is being targeted. .let him stand up to the bullies, then I will take my chances in the law courts

    Reply
  34. Cindy B December 3, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    My son is constantly being bullied in primary school and he retaliated one day and he was deemed the wrong one for defending himself and even the principal wanted to suspend him. So now he goes to school everyday still being tortured and taunted my bullies and even the principal teases him. I wanted to slap her and those bullies in their faces but I know I would end up in jail. I hate how the these government schools operate. Bullies and sad lonely depressed worthless people who cry out for attention. The only way they know to get it is to hurt and torture other helpless children. I will teach my son the right way but the day he gets pushed to the limit and retaliates and gets into trouble for defending himself then so help me god I will step in and it will not be a pleasant ending.

    Reply
  35. Nicole December 3, 2016 at 8:46 pm

    I hope someone on this page give this youngester some FREE judo, karate, defend ya self lessons NOW. …Cause if this was my child i probaly would go madd on one of them kids who bullied my child..Serious thing.But i cant belive non of the relevant autorities has step up to assist, talk, and help this child and mother wunna gine wait till he tek something and come school for the kids that trouble he…see how fast a police get to the school. LOOK INTO THIS NOW…STAMP OUT BULLIES

    Reply
  36. Maria December 3, 2016 at 8:57 pm

    The authorities need to deal with this once and for all. The principals know who the culprits are.

    Reply
  37. Carol December 4, 2016 at 3:15 am

    Nothing in this world should be made an excuse for anyone to be targeted in a school environment. To think like this is like saying ‘if you are deemed different in anyway or form you have no right in society’ how very sad. Whatever anyone thinks, this child has a right to be educated!! Maybe Barbados needs to adopt the UN charter in all schools and in doing doing children begin to understand their rights and responsibilities as young adults. If this is true and the school and education authorities have turned their backs on this vulnerable individual then shame on them! Taking him away says to the bullies that their is no consequences to their actions.

    Reply
  38. Lisa December 4, 2016 at 9:42 am

    My son had to go through that same thing. He is older and strong now. Lets pray that this stupidness stops.

    Reply
  39. Ava December 5, 2016 at 5:01 pm

    You are a very strong woman cause I would be up st.philip all now

    Reply
  40. CamB December 13, 2016 at 6:47 pm

    Real thugs and gangsters in these schools and wouldn’t let decent children that want an education be..last week one slap my granddaughter around she head because she answer he back and these head teachers and teachers like they frighten to discipline them hoodlums…no kind a peace all day long and de wicked brutes wouldn’t stay home at all ..if you keep beating on an animal it would most likely runaway ..what do you think that child is doing he running…somebody somewhere has to put some sort of measures in place the help these helpless children …if you keep them home …court in ya skin if ya home school ..court in ya skin…these bullies can’t see pass the evil that they do ..pray for ya child flyfltpsend him to Taekwondo martial arts to build up his self-defense and self-esteem.PS Some teachers are
    some good bullies too.

    Reply

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