COVINGTON — A Newton County mother said she was shocked Wednesday when her 6-year-old daughter came home from Rocky Plains Elementary with two braids cut out of her hair, claiming she had been the victim of ongoing bullying.
According to a report by the Newton County Sheriff’s Office, Quesadra Goodrun’s daughter encountered another student on the bus, who snipped out pieces of her hair. Goodrun claims that her daughter is being bullied in the classroom as well as on the school bus. She said she has contacted the girl’s school, but has not heard whether anything will be done in response to this incident.
“My daughter is scared to go to school,” Goodrun said. “She has patches of hair missing on her head.”
Goodrun, who is new to the area, said she was not sure who to contact at the school about what happened to her daughter, so shortly after her daughter got off the bus, she called the NCSO and filed a report. However, the issue is not one for law enforcement to handle, NCSO Deputy Cortney Morrison said.
“This is more of a school issue, since the bullying is allegedly happening at school and on the school bus,” she said.
Goodrun said she would like to contact the other student’s parent about what has been happening to her daughter. According to Sherri Davis-Viniard, public relations director for the Newton County School System, NCSS cannot release student or parent contact information to anyone. NCSS is also prohibited from releasing information about individual student discipline issues, Davis-Viniard said.
The Rocky Plains Student Handbook states that students are prohibited from acts of physical violence, bullying or physical assault or battery of other persons on the school bus. Failure to comply with these rules could result in a minimum 10-day suspension from riding the bus. The handbook goes on to say that student bullying offenses can lead to penalties at the discretion of the administrator, which may include but are not limited to in- or out-of-school suspension.
Davis-Viniard would not comment on Goodrun’s allegation specifically, but said that reports of bullying in the schools are taken seriously.
“They are thoroughly investigated and if warranted, disciplinary action is taken,” she said.
Bullying experts say that schools, parents and students all play a role in preventing bullying behavior. According to Bullying Statistics, an anti-bullying website, high school and middle school students across the country claim that they have seen an increase in violence in their schools. Bullying Statistics also claims that about 85 percent of bullying cases get no intervention from teachers or school staff to stop them from taking place. For more information about bullying visit www.stopbullying.gov.