"Something has to be done;" Mother of bullying victim sues Metro Schools

Williamson is suing MNPS for $300,000
Posted at 4:31 PM, Feb 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-27 21:07:41-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A mother claims her daughter was beaten so severely at school, she had to be hospitalized, all while the teacher watched and didn't intervene. Lee Esther Williamson says she only figured out her daughter was being bullied at Gra-Mar Middle Prep when she noticed Taylor's usual glow, darkened. "She was holding her head down, she wouldn’t look me in the face," said Williamson.

She quickly discovered, since the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year, her daughter was being bullied. "She had been pushed into walls, she had been pushed into lockers, she had her head slammed into the cafeteria table," the mother told us.

Williamson says, after every incident, she took her concerns to administrators at Gra-Mar. "I went back, kept going back, kept going back. Nothing. Nothing happened. One time, my daughter decided to take a stand and fight back, and so when she fought back, they punished her," she said.

Then one afternoon in October, Lee found out her daughter's mistreatment had escalated from bullying to assault. "I saw her getting off the bus, she was holding her side, she collapsed in my arms and I raised up her shirt, and that’s when I saw the bruises," Williamson said.

Taylor claimed the attack started by the two little girls choking her and knocking her to the ground. "The girl stands up and continues to kick her in the ribs while this teacher watches and does nothing. It makes no sense to me," she said.

Williamson is now suing Metro Nashville Public Schools to the tune of $300,000 -- partially to recoup medical expenses, mostly to send a message. "I believe that if they had stopped it then, then my daughter would not have ended up in the hospital," Williamson said.

Lee wants to see Metro Schools change their bullying policy with stiffer penalities for the bully and more protections for the victims. "Something has to be done," Williamson said.

Metro Schools tells us they aren't able to comment on on-going court cases. Lee's attorney, Rocky McElhaney, hopes to know if Metro will settle or fight the lawsuit in a couple weeks.