Tuesday, May 11, 2010
You Have GOT To Be Kidding Me
Bullying is a hot topic nowadays, and for good reason. Kids are more brutal to each other than ever and schools are struggling with ways to stop it. And Prairie South School Division in Saskatchewan, Canada has gone about it the WRONG way.
Robert Coomber is the father of a couple of kids, and like most country kids, they ride the bus to school. His youngest is a 5 year old boy named Ryan who is a little different from most of his peers. You see, he lost his leg in a lawnmower accident and uses a prosthetic leg. Instead of admiring the bravery and dignity displayed by their younger schoolmate, kids tortured him every day on the hour-long bus ride to school. The much older kids hit him, stole his backpack, and even tried to pull of his artificial leg. After discovering what was going on, Dad was pissed off and decided to have a chit-chat with the parents of the brats who had been terrorizing his baby.
Pop thought all was resolved until a 13 year old (yeah, a teenager) punched his little man out, giving his kid a facial injury. That's right, one of the biggest kids on the bus wailed on the smallest and nobody did anything about it. Mr. Coomber was just as upset as any of us would be if that were our microman.
The good dad called the parents of the bullies again, and the parents wouldn't hear it. He then asked the school to discipline the punks. The bus driver and principal directed him to go to the school board, and dad plead his case for suspension as the board claims to have a no-bullying policy. The response - "your children are no longer welcome on our buses. You will need to drive them to and from school to ensure their safety." I am NOT kidding. They even offered to pay the dad for his time. The bullies were not only not chastised for their insensitivity, the victim and his sister were punished.
What the HELL is going on here?
We tell our kids that if someone is beating on them and they cannot defend themselves that grown-ups are safe. We tell them to go to their teacher, principal, parents, or someone else trustworthy. To a 5 year old, 13 year olds seem like adults who shouldn't be beating them down. Due to the disturbing actions of the bus driver and all of the other people who should be able to be trusted, this awesome young fellow has learned that adults are dangerous. Even the Province's education minister (yes, the dude who oversees everything education-related for millions of folks) seemed to pussyfoot around the situation.
if this was my child I wouldn't have the grace that Papa Coomber has. I'd blow the most serious of onions. And if I was the esteemed Education Minister, I wouldn't be cowering and giving little "the case has been referred to the school board that we know is the problem" excuse. I'd be head-hunting. I would make sure that the kids were suspended, as well as the principal and every other adult in a position of authority. The bus driver should be fired and the school board investigated for their part in this travesty. And any of the little assholes 12 or older who took part in this (12 is the legal minimum in Canada) should be arrested since it is painfully obvious that their parents have ZERO interest in instilling responsibility in their offspring.
It is OUR obligation as adults to protect those most vulnerable, and an entire sick collection of older citizens conspired to make the life of a 5 year old and his parents miserable. And I am lost as to how to understand why. Behind the most horribly behaved children are incompetent people who claim to call themselves parents. Some people simply are not qualified to care for children. And sometimes the most heinous bullies are people old enough to vote.
Hug your kids and defend them to the death.
Contact Hon. Ken Krawetz, Education Minister and Deputy Premier of Saskatchewan HERE
Posted by Michel-Exildas Galipeau at 17:27