December 9, 2011
"Bullying is unacceptable, but it is especially tragic when a child with disabilities is bullied or physically harmed."
Statement by Randi Weingarten,
President, American Federation of Teachers,
On Assault of Special Needs Student in Cleveland
WASHINGTON—Bullying is unacceptable, but it is especially tragic when a child with disabilities is bullied or physically harmed. This week in Cleveland, a student with mental disabilities was severely beaten outside of his high school. It was not the first time the child was taunted and assaulted. This incident illustrates how schoolyard taunts can quickly accelerate into deadly assaults when left unchecked. We all have a responsibility to work together to ensure that our schools are safe environments for students and staff. The AFT will continue to push to make our schools and school grounds safe havens, where all students can live and learn without fear of being taunted, humiliated or assaulted.
Follow AFT President Randi Weingarten: http://twitter.com/#!/rweingarten
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The AFT represents 1.5 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.