At school is where children often face bullying by their peers- campaigns across the globe try to highlight the importance of bringing the bullying into the spotlight and how many suffer in silence to the detriment their mental health and well-being.
Children are often told to come forward to those they trust, people such as their guardians and first and often first and foremost, their teachers. But what is your child’s bully IS their teacher? This is the situation an 11-year-old girl faced when she was bullied and even beaten at the hands of her teachers.
“One of these teachers went so far as to tell the little girl to “go kill herself” and threatened other students with failing grades if they didn’t fight the 11-year-old. When that first teacher was removed from the classroom for her behavior, a second teacher took up right where she left off and continued the abuse.”
As reported by The Grio:
The two teachers, Ann Marie Shelvin and Tracy Gallow, have been criminally charged.
In February St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby Guidroz learned of the accusations against the first teacher after the girl’s mother filed a complaint. In April, the mother came back and said the abuse was still ongoing.
According to deputies, Shelvin, an elementary teacher at Washington Elementary, said she would fail three of her students if they refused to fight the girl. She also allegedly told the girl being bullied and beaten to “go and kill herself.”
One of the students forced to fight the girl said that she did it because she was scared she would be bullied like the girl if she didn’t and that the teacher told her she would refuse to help her with her classwork just as she refuses to help the bullied girl.
Shelvin was eventually removed from the class and Gallow, a former teacher’s aide took control of the classroom.
However, unbeknownst to the little girl, the abuse would continue, complete with video of an attack on the little girl at the hands of Gallow, all because the student was “too upset”.
The mother of the girl said that Gallow retaliated against her daughter for reporting the incidents of abuse.
Surveillance cameras at the school caught Gallow pushing the girl onto the bleachers two separate times. She admitted she shoved her because she felt the student was too upset to go take a test.
Anthony Stanberry, a school board official told KLFY that he is disturbed by the news and he promised swift action.
“As a St. Landry Parish school board member, St. Landry Parish is not going to tolerate it. Whatever actions needs to be taken care of to handle the situation is what we plan to do.”
The school district is also investigating the allegations.
“We want to assure the school community that we take these allegations very seriously and we are doing everything to protect the health, safety and welfare of our students,” St. Landry Parish School Board supervisor of personnel Matthew Scroggins stated.
Sheriff Guidroz commended the mother for doing the right thing by reporting the abuse.
“Students should not have to attend school and be bullied especially by teachers that are there for their education, guidance and safety,” he said.
The two female teachers have been charged with malfeasance in office, intimidation and interference in school operations.
With hard evidence and the admittance of abuse, it will be hard for the teachers to defend their actions of abusing a child in their care and encouraging others to join in. The only appropriate way to show that this school has a zero tolerance for bullying against their students is for these educators to lose their jobs, if not their license altogether and for them to be liable for the crimes they have found themselves charged with.
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(Article By Tasha Sharifa)