Bullying In New Glasgow School

Last September Rachel and I moved from Toronto and its overworked, overstressed, TDSB (Toronto District School Board) to rural small town New Glasgow, Nova Scotia. In that move, I really thought Roo would do much better in a smaller school.

Let me tell you the advantage of the big city. The amount of programming for kids like Roo is there ( you may have to fight for it but it is there) whereas here in New Glasgow Roo has languished.

Our School Year in New Glasgow

It has been an extremely difficult year. Of course with the move, I expected some blimps along the way. To be honest, nothing could of prepared me for the year we have had thus far. Roo goes to a school with just over 100 students ( that is common here). There are little supports available for kids like Roo ( smart, yet super challenged socially). She was put into a regular grade 5 environment where there has been little support considering her challenges.

Then to top off the lack of proper educational supports you have a bullying policy that is there in writing but nothing is really done to implement it or to be proactive. Every recess you see kids getting hurt usually at the hands of other children, you hear stories of kids being isolated, of names being hurled and the list, goes on.

For Roo this year has been hell. First, in November it was her being gang attacked on the way home from school by two other female students ( these kids are grade 5-6) while 5 boys stood and watched and cheered it on. I called the police. They came and said there was little to do besides talking to the parents as the children were under the age of 12. The school could do nothing because the attack took place just off school property.

In March Roo had to visit the emergency room after being pushed down on the ice. She needed 5 stitches to close up her lip. I was told it was accidental by staff, yet Rachel said it was an intentional act. I tend to believe her.

After that incident, Roo has become more depressed and almost every day she endures some form of bullying from being spat at, pushed, called a name, etc.. Last month she told me she would rather die then go to school.

Then today at morning recess there was another incident. Roo was hanging upside down on a movable bar in the playground. Another child came along and twisted the bar causing her to fall and now she is left with a huge welt and a bad headache.

After the incident today Roo decided she has had enough. She left school ( I know very dangerous for an 11 yr old) and came home. She feels not listened too, she feels as if teachers and staff don’t care or dismiss things as accidents or roughhousing. When did roughhousing become ok?

I have been told as I talk with other parents that Roo is not the only child who is enduring a life like this. I am now a Mom at my wit’s end and the Momma bear in me is out. I think we especially here in Nova Scotia need to challenge the definition of bullying. We need to do more and better for every Roo that is enduring a life of pure terror or else who knows she just could end up dead and for this parent that is unthinkable.

I have tried calling the board and basically got nowhere. I have spoken to the principal and well the man refuses to see the problems in his school. So what would you do? what if this was your daughter? how can we do better for our children?

Please feel free to share your stories of bullying here, share solutions you see as workable. I am all ears.



4 thoughts to “Bullying In New Glasgow School”

  1. Hollie, I am sooo sorry your little girl is having to go though this… I have a great post for you – I just wrote it – and will post it this week…

    In the meantime, you have some options… I’m guessing you can’t readily change schools or you would have done that already? Your other alternative is to find a college-aged student who is interested in making some money. No… this isn’t going where you think, although… anyway, all they have to do is walk Roo to school and pick her up and walk her back home. Then at least she may not be bothered. This would take some work though; you’d want to be sure you have the right person. Or if you can’t pay someone, find a neighbor or someone you trust who’d be willing to help out.

    Your third option is to have her take a cab to school each day.

    Keep all your doctors bill in order… and keep a journal of all the times she’s had a “mishap” including the date, what happened, names of the perps if you have them. If need be, you can take your case up with the school and perhaps get them to provide her an escort.

    I don’t know your work situation, could you drop her off at school yourself?

    You might have to take this up directly with the parents of the kids involved.

    Good luck. This one is not easy. Thanks for your visit. I hope my ideas were useful.


  2. Hi Hollie,I recommend getting the police involved again, and possibly even consulting the school board for action against the principal. The one incident is enough to hope things will blow over, but twice definitely needs to be dealt with.
    One warning, if you do confront the bullying children, is do it in a public setting, ie, the classroom, and lay their shameful behaviour on thick by embarrassing them in front of their peers. The most dangerous thing for you to do would be to confront them while they walked home. They could turn the story around and say that you assaulted them, etc. Furthermore, I’d demand that the school board pay for a psychologist to talk to your child and see what, if any, other damage has been done that you may not be aware of.

  3. HI 🙂 Thanks for adding me on Twitter!

    I am so sorry for your pains with your daughter 🙁 Oh this is so sad! I was bullied as a girl and teenager all through school and I still dont really know why. But I hear it is NOT uncommon, in fact it happens all the time, sadly enough.

    I also have a teenage boy, although he lives with his father now. When he was small he had this problem, and I had to tell him (coming from my anger) that people are just mean, and there is nothing wrong with him, and it will never change, ppl will always try to treat others that way so he needs to learn to accept/deal and move on.. I know, tough love huh!

    So anyway he told me he was being bulling last year, and he was the one to stand up for himself – not by fighting but by going to the principle etc etc.. he didnt care what they thought, he just knew he didnt deserve it! Fortunately there have zero tolerance there, and the kids got severely reprimanded. He is in high school now, I dont know how it is, but I hope he is learning there are just a lot of mean people in the world and they will always try to pick on those who they perceive to be “weak” for whatever reason…

    The best thing in my opinion is to teach the child their self worth – that they are good, and beautiful and wonderful , but it is a tough world… and to accept they are always gonna be bullies -even as adults! So not to think about them much, but try to overcome it.

    I wish u the best and may God make it easy for you both.

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