When parents send their kids to school, they are under the assumption that the children will be in a safe and protected environment. For some children, the school routine sadly includes having to deal with bullying. Delanie Marcotte of New Hampshire is a fifth grader who hated going to school because of the verbal and physical abuse she endured from her classmates.
When her family took the matter to the school district, they were met with a lackluster response. They knew they needed to up their efforts, so in July 2018, Delanie and her parents went to the district’s school board meeting to share her story.
They hoped this effort would shed some light on the terrible bullying Delanie was up against and motivate community leaders to really take action.
When her father, Todd, prepared to speak on her behalf in front of the board members, Delanie decided that she needed to share the story herself, asking Todd: “Can I go?”
Her bravery in sharing her experience should certainly be praised, as it couldn’t have been easy for her to read her prepared statement. In the end, she left the room speechless.
She said: “Hi my name is Delanie. I’m here to talk about a problem that means a lot to me. Bullying… I’ve been threatened to get shot in the head by a AK-47 and buried in my backyard and many other things… I like working and studying but I just don’t like being bullied.”
Delanie noted during her statement: “I ask you, what are you going to do to protect me and my classmates against bullying? I’m here to stand up for every kid who gets bullied.”
She explained to NBC10 Boston why this was such an important thing for her to do, noting: “I wanted to let them know I was getting bullied and that I didn’t want it to happen anymore. They kick me and they say mean things, call me names — it is not nice.”
Her dad told the news: “It is very hard to watch your child get bullied, hear about it day in and day out, and you do get very aggravated. It’s an issue, and it’s an issue that has to be addressed.”
When Todd shared a video of his courageous daughter at the school board meeting, he couldn’ t believe the overwhelming response. Delanie said of the reaction on social media: “I’m surprised, but it is kind of nice to have all this support.”
Timberlane Regional School District Superintendent Earl F. Metzler told NBC10 Boston that the district supports the students, noting: “We will continue to encourage all students to speak up when they see, hear or experience something that makes them uncomfortable.”
He continued: “The same holds true for parents and community members. There are many vehicles at Timberlane to share your concerns including, but not limited to, the public comment portion of our School Board agenda.”
Delanie is hopeful that her story opened some eyes in the district and that there will be an end to the suffering, as she noted: “I hope it all stops, and they’ll stop being rude.”
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