AISD Must Reform Now

Let Parents Know

When Chris parents first notified the school that he was obsessed with me and hurting himself, and potentially me, they have a legal responsibility to tell me this for my own protection.  FERPA laws demanding privacy have a clear exception for student safety, and this is why.  I needed to know I was in danger, and my parents needed to know also so everyone would be safe, including Chris.

Let Kids Call Parents

If someone tries to kill themselves in front of you or you feel unsafe for any reason, schools must allow you to call your parents.  This isn't just good policy, it is the law.  AISD needs to start following it.

Fire Crazy Employees

If your school counselor tells you that you should be flattered when you're harassed, she is nuts and should be fired.  Keeping crazy employees around only hurts kids.  School isn't for the teachers, it is for the kids, so make us the priority over bad employee career considerations.

AISD Police No More

AISD Police are under the district control, so they can't objectively investigate wrongdoing on the part of school and district employees. They need to be independent, and a part of Austin police so they can protect students, not administrators.  As structured today, they are just a tool for the district to cover up their mistakes with no fear that anyone will properly investigate and hold them accountable.

Stay Away from Stay Away

Asking a victim to sign the standard AISD School Based Stay Away form, is asking them to first confess that they are in fact the perpetrator.  Stop putting victims on trial and retaliating against them.  This form is clearly a violation of the victim's civil rights.

Don't Harass the Victim's Friends

When a student reports harassment, calling in their friends and trying to intimidate them, interrogate them into stating that the harassment never took place is another form of retribution that is illegal under federal law.  AISD needs to stop doing this.

Altering Transcripts Isn't Cool

Hey, I know you want me to go away, but it is unlawful to retaliate by putting my bad middle school grades on my high school transcript.  Claiming that this is a high school course doesn't work either, especially since other students at my school took the same classes and you didn't do this to them (and we have the proof).  Another illegal way AISD will retaliate.

Follow Safety Plans

I've had many safety plans proposed by the school, and they didn't follow any of them.  As a result, school became a dangerous place for me where I didn't feel safe.  My harasser had free reign, I was unprotected.  AISD must follow their own safety plans, and when someone has PTSD from the harassment, for petes sake, help them!

Don't Limit Victims

AISD officials wouldn't let me even use the bathroom at times because they were allowing my harasser priority in the hall.  I had to curtail my choir activities if he was there, and my academics became much harder to concentrate on.  AISD basically made me suffer at school, so my harasser was not inconvenienced and could attend activities of his choosing, thus keeping me from attending.  This is a violation of my civil right to public education, stop it AISD.

Trust Me

My parents and I repeatedly told the school about how I had panic attacks when I saw Chris.  Despite this, they kept planning on bringing him into contact with me or willfully failing to act in manner to keep us apart.  As a result, my PTSD got a lot worse.  The school principal kept telling my parents I was OK, when my parents told her repeatedly that I was not.  AISD officials, even at the district level, were informed of this, and no one listened.  They kept telling us that I was fine, and kept on hurting me.  AISD needs to listen to parents and doctors when they say a student is hurting, and act quickly to protect us from harassers.

Don't Blame the Victim

My current safety plan from the district states that Chris now has an escort to protect him from my false accusations. OK, this is nuts.  Isn't he the guy who was having violent outbursts in school, cutting himself, and tried to kill himself in front of me because I wouldn't date him?  So, again, what am I missing here?  AISD will blame the victim to protect the mirage that their schools are safe when, in fact, they are not.

Stop Deliberate Indifference

When a school knows that you're hurting from harassment, they can't look the other way.  They have a legal obligation to help victims, and not deny the truth of their situation.  If they do not keep this obligation, they are deliberately indifferent and committing even worse offenses.  AISD needs to acknowledge this is happening in their schools, and replace the entire harassment reporting team.  It is time to protect the students, not the adults who harm them.