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SERIOUS NEWS: Olive Branch Intermediate School has at least one bullying situation that has not been addressed or resolved. One frustrated parent is at the end of their rope with the situation and the school’s lack of help. DeSoto County Schools claims to have a zero tolerance policy for bullying, but as with most things at DCS, it is more talk than show. The principal has been made aware of this situation. The bullying has been going on for 2-3 months now. The principal told the parent, “This is the age of the gangster and rap lifestyle”! Before you assume you know the race or gender of the children involved, don’t assume because most likely you would be wrong. Things came to a head recently when the bully told the victim, “If I had a knife, I would stab you to death”! Keep in mind, this school is 4th and 5th graders. With no assistance from the school, the parent was forced to file a police report. The police came to the school and took the bully into custody. Shortly after their release, the bully’s parent returned the child to school. The bully came back to school laughing about the situation as though it were all one big joke. The victim has been left feeling alone and very depressed. The victim, 11 years old, is now telling family members that he/she want to committ suicide. The parent is a single parent and is incredibly worried about the safety of the child. It is my opinion that zero tolerance should mean exactly that….ZERO TOLERANCE!! Suspension or expulsion is usually the consequence for these actions. It was brought to my attention that the parent may or may not have been given the option to have their child, the victim, transferred out to another school. How does this fix anything?! You get rid of the victim and leave the bully there to then go onto another helpless child. I understand we are talking about 11 and 12 year olds, but I say enough is enough. If something was to happen to the victim, what responsibility or liability would the school have for blatantly ignoring the situation due to this being the “norm”?! Of course I am sure the county office will claim ignorance of the situation existing, but what do you expect when your Superintendent spends all of their time lobbying in Jackson instead of doing what he was elected to do…RUN THE SCHOOLS!!! I would love to hear from you about this situation or any other situation like it going on in DeSoto County or in any other school. DeSoto County Reform will stay on top of this situation until a TRUE resolution has been achieved!!

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8 thoughts on “Olive Branch Intermediate School Lends No Help to Victim of Bullying

  1. I have not heard about this, but it is not
    surprising to me. My child attends another DCS where the principal has been very outspoken against bullying; however, there have been several times over the last couple of years when the appropriate action was not taken. On one of these occasions, my daughter was being made fun of and comments were made about her having a small chest! I went and spoke with the vice principal at the time bc, as usual, the principal was not at the school. I was told it was being taken seriously & that actions would be taken. Guess what? The other child was told not to talk to my child and that was it! This was the child of a teacher! I had also complained twice about the teacher bc of her having a student put his belt around another student while he was in his desk so he would be still (I know!!!) and for bad-mouthing one student to another. All this was after her bad-mouthing a child to me on the first time we met!

    So no I am not surprised and I think it’s ludicrous that the victim was maybe given the option to leave instead of the bully being punished. I pray that this poor child, the victim, does not follow through with what he/she is thinking about with suicide. I also pray that the bully is somehow shown how serious this is & what kind of psychological damage is being done.

  2. I agree with everything you have said! We have had a lot of people tell us that the principals are rarely at school. Do you think this has been a big issue for your school? We have found that it is common practice for principals and employees at the county office to have very relaxed work days. When your leaders lead in this way, how can anyone expect the staff to not follow the same practices?! The people making the money are rarely the ones doing the work. The ones doing the work do not have the resources they need to do their jobs. This leaves the kids with no discipline or guidance. These situations need to be addressed and faced head on. DCS, in most cases, focuses more on trying to keep their shiny 4 star rating intact than they do actually making the schools the best they can be. I never want our kids to fall victim to the irresponsible actions of the “supposed” leaders. I hate that your child’s situation was not given more attention, and I pray this other child’s situation will be addressed. We plan on staying on top of this issue and any other one brought to us. We have learned that DCS needs watchdogs. We feel strongly our childrens education and lives depend on it.

  3. I hate to be the bad guy here but sometimes there is only one way to deal with a bully. My son got jumped by 3 other kids in the locker room at Olive Branch middle school 2 years ago and one of the coaches threatened to paddle him. The 3 boys lied and stated my son started the fight when even one of the football coaches son said my son was minding his own business. These 3 boys messed with him all year and nothing was done. My son begged me to let him fight these boys one on one because he knew one on one he would win. I told him go ahead son get each one of them one on one by themselves seeing how the school isn’t gonna do anything about it. My son did just that! To this day they will not mess with my son when they see him. This is one of the reasons I hate the public school system..that and it’s a big waste of tax dollars!

  4. This is rediculous. My babies go to this school, and I am appalled that the principle is taking this attitude about it.

    What happens when this little rat does bring a knife to school and stand a child? He will have to live with that the rest of his life, and the other kid does too.

    Why are his parents allowing this to continue? Where are they and what has been done?

    • We have tried to follow up on this but met with resistence with school officials. The parent is a single parent and has done all that she knows to do. It is my understanding that a police report was filed. It is also my understanding that the option to have her child transferred out was given as a possibility. The Principal has been made aware but not taken any action that we are aware oA lot of times once we become involved, actions are taken behind the scenes and kept hush hush. We will continue to follow up with this situation and see if there has been a resolution. The children are always at the forefront of what we do. They need advocates and especially when the system has failed them! We appreciate your concern and for being involved!!

  5. The word “BULLYING’ puts people on the defensive right away, for stalling any sensible debate.
    I understand that as a parent (single father of two) how a parent could be heart sick to think their child(ren) maybe in duress, The immediate response to your child is a combination of sympathy, and wanting to first reassure your child he/she of how wonderful and very loved they are. Then maybe you start fuming and want apologies, punishment with the reassurance that it will not happen again. Also that your child will feel safe and happy where you send them 5 days a week.
    The notion that the situation can be resolved by to retaliate against one another can only turn the school into an arena. Two wrongs do not make it right.
    Please, understand that I’m not defending real bullying and that I take it very seriously. I just do not want the bullying to go so far that any accusation is taken at face value, and a innocent child is damaged with being labeled a “BULLY” in the process. Like many such things, our enforcement ends up going overboard often presented as guilty til proven innocent. The saying goes ‘there is three sides to a story. We should not just assume because a report was filed it is always the truth.
    What if this child who has been accused of bullying is not guilty. We should not be so hasty to jump to the conclusions of guilt of the other child involved based on hearsay. I’m sure we all would want a fair chance. This could have just as much have devastating results of harm on this child, too. Such as social, and psychological, and depression. From just listening to one side of the story all are ready to label this child a “BULLY’! It is important as I said before not to dismiss a child who has claimed to be bullied, but still believe both sides should be heard.
    Regardless of how the accusation of being bullied was brought to the OBIS, I’m positive that the school officials must have ensured that the complaint was promptly and thoroughly addressed. As far as the police report anyone can file one it is just a bluster with no substance. Could it be just the unwillingness of the mother to accept the outcome?
    We all should be concerned for both children involved. It makes me sad, and mad at the same time what has happened to us as a society. There should be consequences for the actions taken, and all should take responsibility for their actions. once resolution is reached.
    I would like to believe that it is TRUE RESOLUTIN that is wanted to be achieved by all concerned. And not use this situation to bash DCS’s and the administrative staff.

    • In this situation, it went on for months. Finally, the police were involved and called out to the school. The police told the victim’s parent to keep up with them on the situation because the school would not help. I am sure that statement was based on a history of not taking action and not because the police had issue with the school. In every situation, you do not want any child to be labeled one way or another. The child who was “picking on” or “bullying” the other child thought it was quite funny. The child came back to school, laughing about the situation. The problem here is that the “bully” needs help too. This situation has 2 children that need guidance and support. First of all, this all starts at home with the parents. Second, the school should have counseled both students. Each school has a Guidance Counselor for this very reason. Third, if it gets to a point the Principal does not intervene after all other avenues have failed, there is no other course of action other than involving the authorities. We do not make judgement on the children. We take issue with the adults who have not handled this situation along the way. When do adults take responsibility and advocate for these children instead of trying to place the blame on the other. It is not the school’s responsibility to raise the children. It is not the police’s responsibility to have to govern the schools. At some point along the way, we need someone to say, “Hey…this may not be my job or responsibility, but I see kids in trouble that need help. I will give of myself to help ensure both kids are given the guidance they need.”

      There is no blame. The issue is simple. If our children are at school, the school administrators have a responsibility to ensure their safety and well being. MS Dept of Edu even has a whole division, Dept of Safe and Healthy Schools, for this very reason. If they have a situation they can not handle, they need to alert the parents, county office, school board or any other proper authority. To take no action or just say this is how it is, is not acceptable. The other issue in all of this, is that parents need to be informed of issues in the school. How can we come together as parents, students, educators or as a community if we have no idea what is going on? For some reason, people view being informed of an issue as a bad thing. They view a person, saying that an area needs improvement, as disgruntled and attempting to attack the entire operation. We can not fix what we do not know is broken. Nothing in life is perfect, and there are absolutely no simple answers. It takes all of us coming together to get things right. If we start condemning every person that has an issue or a need, how will we ever get anywhere? It is most certain that there will come a time when you may be in the very same situation. How would you want someone to respond to you? You have to think about that before condemning one person or another.

      We try to be mindful of everyone, but it is impossible to be successful in doing that all of the time. The kids are just kids. Their behavior is a reflection of those around them. A bully and a victim both need help. Neither child should move forward in the world with either stigma attached to them. Parents have to do their part at home, and the school has to do their part while our kids are in their care. There has to be communication and teamwork to get these kids where they need to go. Without this, we will surely fail them. We need each other whether we realize it or not..

  6. I think this is the type of issue best dealt with by having a meeting with both children and ALL parents involved. Typically the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. If the child is behaving in such a thuggish way, pretty good shot that the parents will behave in like manner. School videotapes should be pulled and behavior of both children confirmed. As JB stated, there is usually a third side to the argument, untainted by perception and hurt feelings. As a middle school parent, I insist that objective data be revealed prior to making any rash statements. If the accusation is true, the bully should be removed from the school and sent to an alternative learning center for a period of time. His parents should be required to transport him there and a full written apology should be issued both to the child and parent. However, if the other child bears some responsibility, then both children should be equally punished. The school grounds and atmosphere act as a training ground for adult conflict management. If this child doesn’t learn to advocate for self, he will be miserable throughout school. If hte bully doesn’t learn personal accountability, he will be a “problem” into adulthood. As an employer, I can always spot the kids that learned to advocate for self AND kids that have learned the hard lesson of personal accountability quickly. The others are usually left available to the industry, so to speak.
    All that being said, sometimes simply accepting the challenge and allowing the victim to clock the bully works wonders! Anyone ever watch the Christmas Story? Ralphie got fed up and Vargus left in tears…

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