The top story this week is about a New Jersey father Stuart Chiafetz, who says his 10-year-old son Akian who has autism was tormented for at least six months by his public school special education teacher and aide. The father sent his son wired to school and the six hour recorded audio that came back “changed his life forever.” Chiafetz made a 17 minute video called Teacher/Bully: How My Son Was Humiliated and Tormented by His Teacher and Aide this video is heart wrenching as you hear Akian called a “bastard” and laughed at when audibly upset. Chiafetz made the video in hopes he can get a public apology from those people involved and create awareness. Chiafetz is also spear heading a campaign petition to pass legislation so that teachers who bully their students are fired immediately. I share this father’s story and his plea for change because bullying is no laughing matter and as parents we need to stand up and say no to teacher/peer bullies.
As a mother to a little boy who has autism bullying weighs heavily on my mind. My husband and I pulled our son Tristan out of a public preschool a couple of years ago because of aggressive and violent behavior from another student. The other student the same age as our son came from a very bad home environment and the boy acted out his anger at school. My son went from loving school to being dragged by two adults everyday into the classroom. He quit eating, sleeping, started to bite his nails, bit his skin, and stemmed more. My son at the time was practically non-verbal and it took my husband and I nearly a month to figure out what was the cause. We decided to pull our son out of that preschool and it was the best thing we could have done for him at the time.
We are our children’s best advocate and you are their voice, especially when they have no voice. If you think your child is bullied do not stand idly by go and talk to your child’s teacher, go to the principal and if all else fails go to your school board chairman as schools boards do not like this kind of media attention. Below I share several links I think are helpful if you think your child is bullied. Please share this post to spread awareness to stand up and say no to bullies and get people to sign the PETITION.
Helpful Links and Resources:
Autism Speaks: Combating Bullying
Autism Speaks: School Community Tool Kit
National Bullying Prevention Center
Since We’re Friends: An Autism Picture Book (This book explains autism on a kid level and lets kids know what they can do to be a child’s friend who has autism.)
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