Editorial, Opinion

EDIT: Protect your students

After his fourth grade son endured months of physical and verbal bullying from a fellow classmate at Rolling Hills Elementary, Stephen Feudner said as a last resort he filed a restraining order against the troubled nine-year-old.

The restraining order was granted, but since the school refuses to release the full name and address of the fourth grader due to privacy claimss, it cannot be issued. If this order by Feudner is not served in five days, it will become null and void — leaving the father to do what he is supposed to and help his son deal with the issue without the law getting involved.

Feudner’s son was quoted by San Francisco at CBS local and said, the bully said “haha, you got punched in the face,” after he punched him in the face.

There is nothing to “haha” about when it comes to a nine-year-old getting punched in the face. At this age, kids should not even have the mental or physical ability to inflict such harm on someone else. But unfortunately, when a kid is brought up in that kind of environment, sometimes it resonates on his or her own demeanor.

Yes, parents are responsible for instilling the values of compassion and respect on their kids. But this restraining order has nothing to do with the fact that the nine-year-old bully has some misdirected aggression and has yet to learn compassion and respect. But rather, it has to with garnering some publicity about the fact that the school has not adequately protected Feudner’s son.

The superintendent of the Fairfield-Suisun School District told KPIX 5 on Friday that “safety is their number-one priority.” Well, if Feudner felt his last option was turning to a restraining order, clearly the school has not executed enough authority and discipline over their kids.

Elementary school kids are the most impressionable and also the most vulnerable. This school needs to capitalize off of that and teach their kids that hitting a classmate in the face is simply not the way to go about getting what they want.

But, at the same time, the school can technically only exert power over its kids when they are still on school grounds. Since this elementary school has failed in protecting Feudner’s son, he was right to take action himself — but involving the law was not the way to go about it.

In the end, though, the Feudner said in an interview with CBS San Francisco that he exhausted all other options with the school. He said he spent months speaking with administrators, but failed to get results. There is counseling, workshops and meetings, and so many other options than filing a restraining order against a nine-year-old. Not only is it too extreme, but also the thought itself just sounds ridiculous. It’s just plain sad that Feudner felt he had run out of options, especially when he should be able to trust the school with his child.

What ever happened to the power of talking it out?

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