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Mom to School Board: Son Was Brutally Attacked

Parents plead for help with bullying claims against their son.

The parents of a Jefferson Township High School freshman came before the Board of Education to plead for help after, they said, their son was “brutally attacked” by another student.

They said they plan to file a tort claim notice against the school district later this week. But school officials said that they have addressed the issue and taken what they believe to be appropriate action.

“My son was attacked and beaten up on April 19,” a tearful Elaine Attanasio told the board. “I’ve begged for help since October, and no one has helped me.”

Elaine and Michael Attanasio told the board that doctors have said their son Christian suffered a concussion and possible permanent damage to his left eye as a result of the incident, which allegedly started in a classroom and spilled into the hallway during the school day.

In a letter that the Attanasios wrote to Board of Education members and shared with Patch, they claim that their son was given no medical attention after the incident. The letter reads, in part:

"I CAN NOT believe no medical attention was given to my son! I am outraged, that the school did not notify me. Just how long were they going to wait?! My son was delusional, hysterical, and bleeding, sitting in the office which is all windows, as a spectacle for all to see!!! He was completely embarrassed, and should have been at the VERY LEAST kept in the nurse’s office. Even if the nurse didn’t see fit to call an ambulance after assessing all of his injuries (which in and of itself, is hard to believe), the administrator in charge should have after she took one look at my son."

Attanasio also said she was dissatisfied with the Harrassment, Intimidation and Bullying Incidences (HIB) report that was presented at Monday's meeting, which reported that no incidents had occurred at the high school for April.

“I filed a HIB form,” she said. “How could they say there were no incidents?”

Schools superintendent Joseph Kraemer said that the reason that the incident did not appear on the report was because the full report pertaining to the incident in question had not been completed yet, and that it would be present on the next HIB report.

“Mrs. Attanasio is inaccurate in her statement that we haven’t done anything,” Kraemer said. “We have identified the parties and taken the appropriate action.”

Citing confidentiality issues, Kraemer declined to comment specifically on the incident in question, but said that an action plan after an alleged bullying incident could include supervision in the hallways, counseling, an aide on the bus or a possible change of schedule. The district’s policy on harassment, intimidation and bullying can be found on its web site.

Attanasio said she is dissatisfied with the board’s response to her plea, which she said also includes a request for disciplinary action against vice principal Noreen Risko, who, she believes, did not adequately address the incident.

Attanasio's letter called for further action:

"I firmly believe Noreen Risko needs disciplinary action taken against her. Acting as an administrator, she had the responsibility to act on any harassment, intimidation, or bullying incident that was reported to her even if no HIB was submitted. An investigation should have been done."

Christine Bott May 23, 2012 at 03:26 PM
And to say you NEVER saw anyone getting bullied in your 4 years of HS - I just think you didn't want to see it!!! But then again HS is large place - how can you be in every corner of that school to see what REALLY happens!! You should be lucky that you weren't bullied!! You are in school to get an education, not worry about walking out of class and getting attacked from behind from some bully!! It's sad that a family wants to protect their child and feel that the JTBOE isn't doing anything to help them keep their child protected so they are taking the necessary steps to do that and to get BULLIED for taking those steps is sad. It's not about them suing and making money from this, it's about making sure JTBOE upholds the law that has been put in place to stop the bullying and currently its seems that they are failing in that department!! They are making a statement and its seems the only way to do that and get their point across is to SUE!! We all know that - everyone listens up and gets that act together when we SUE!! Obviously this is a serious problem and we shouldn't make light of it calling it "a tiny, meaningless altercation that commonly happens in life between two immature children", no person should ever put their hands on another person regardless of age!!! Isn't that what we teach our children as soon as they start to interact with other children??
Sharon Bosler May 23, 2012 at 08:57 PM
Reject Sharon Bosler 4:56 pm on Wednesday, May 23, 2012 Amen Mrs Bott well said as a parent of 2 high school kids myself I totally agree with you 100%. It's very easy for people to make accusations. Besides they have no clue about the incident they are going by hear say not the facts!!! And the amnoyous people need to stop hiding behind a keyboard flapping their mouths. What they write is disturbing and inappropriate if the tables were turned and it was their child I would love to see what form of action they would take!!
Sharon Bosler May 23, 2012 at 08:59 PM
Ha ha another person hiding behind a keyboard.
Michelle Schaller May 23, 2012 at 09:59 PM
It doesn't matter who is right/wrong or who did what! The fact of the matter is there are 2 children/families who are hurt by this sittuation and the school system failed both families.
Christine Bott May 24, 2012 at 01:22 PM
""The greatest ignorance is to reject something you know nothing about”. I just don't understand how people can be so ignorant to what bullying is!! Bullying is a major issue - whether it is verbal or abusive!!! Maybe all you ANONYMOUS or NO NAME people on this message board were the bullies back in your HS days (and obviously still ARE) just don't get it - you don't know the pain that you caused the people that you bullied!! You don't understand the feelings of being bullied. I just think that people who have never been bullied don't know what this child is going through and have never been a victim and it is easy to say it is an "exaggerated situation" or that they are lying. You have no idea what this family is going through with this situation - why do we shun people when they are just trying to protect their own from situations that NO child should have to endure!!" KARMA!!!

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