Local Family Takes Legal Action To Keep Student Safe
by Janet Kim
GALLATIN, Tenn. -- School is a place you want your
children to feel safe, but one mid-state family believes that's just not the
case and they're taking legal action.
The Woods family said 13-year old Bryson is being bullied, and it's kept him
from going back to school at Shafer Middle School in Sumner County.
Bryson said someone threw a football at him. When he went to give it back, he
was chased and pushed down. His got a bloody nose when he fell down.
It's one of many incidents Bryson describes as bullying, and this isn't the first
Sumner County school he said he's experienced it. The Woods pressed criminal
charges last year after they say Bryson was beaten with a belt multiple times
at another Gallatin Middle School. They say that student got probation and transferred
to another school district.
"Our job is to protect them, and when we can't send them to a public
school without being bloodied or bruised or coming home with marks on him, then
we have a serious problem," said Kim Woods, Bryson's mother.
Supporters have started Facebook pages and online petitions to stop the
bullying of Bryson, who they say represents children being bullied across the
country. Child advocates say it's not a bad idea to get the issues in the
"I think any time we can get the message out about bullying and harassment,
it's a positive thing," said STARS Vice President of Youth Development
The district released this statement: "Sumner County Schools has taken all
possible action to investigate and address this issue and will continue to work
with the Woods family until a resolution can be reached."
It's a resolution the Woods say they don't have.
"Every child needs to feel safe in school," said Kim Woods.
The Woods say they believe the bullies from both schools are connected- that
they're cousins. They do plan to file criminal charges in this most recent