OKLAHOMA CITY — An Oklahoma City mother wants the school district to suspend several elementary students who she said attacked her children on a school bus Tuesday afternoon.
Delisha Gardner said her 10-year-old daughter, 7-year-old son and her niece came home crying from F.D. Moon Elementary School.
They were breathing heavily and had red marks on their skin.
They said other students attacked them on the school bus. t
Gardner said the school told her they banned the attackers from riding the bus for a few days but did not suspend them.
Now she’s worried about repeat attacks and the affects this bullying will have on her kids.
The attack was caught on bus surveillance video.
Gardner was allowed to see the video but the district is not releasing it to the media.
One victim said the bullies don’t like her nice clothes or her good grades.
“I tried to fight back but I couldn’t because they were pulling my hair and socking me in my face,” she said Thursday.
The fifth grader said these same kids also threaten her at F.D. Moon Elementary with gang activity.
“They say, ‘I’m beating you up after school’ and they said they’re going to shoot my momma’s house up,” she said.
Her cousin tried to defend her on the bus.
“They just started hitting us and calling us all kinds of names,” she said.
“When you go to school, you’re in school, but it feels like you’re in a war against different people,” Gardner said.
She said her heart broke when she saw the bus surveillance video.
“I did cry after but I just tell my kids to stay strong and don’t worry about it,” she said.
Gardner said she was told the attackers would be suspended from riding the bus for nine days but would not be suspended from attending school.
That’s upsetting to her, especially in light of Wednesday’s suicide by a Stillwater Jr.High student.
Gardner said her daughter has talked about committing suicide as well.
“I know it has been hurting her and she was crying but I’m going to make sure I stay by her side through the whole thing,” she said.
Tierney Tinnin with the OKC Public Schools District said Thursday they have always taken bullying seriously but could not give details on their response to this particular incident.
“We know that things like what happened in Stillwater can happen anywhere,” spokesperson Tierney Tinnin said.
She said counseling is available for the victims and the attackers have been punished.
“I know that they were disciplined according to the student code of conduct because we wanted to send a clear message to all of those students on that bus that this type of behavior will not be tolerated,” Tinnin said.
Tinnin said three students were disciplined.
They urge anyone to report bullying to their safe school hotline(405) 587-STOP.
Parents can apply for an emergency transfer to have their child change schools within the district if they feel there is a safety concern.
Gardner said she would look into that possibility for the safety of her children.