Parents speak out at Sparta school board meeting about bullying incident

An unusually large number of voices are heard at Tuesday night’s school board meeting in Sparta.

Parents are demanding answers after a reported bullying incident on a school bus last week.

Police are investigating, interviewing students and looking at surveillance tape from the bus. But that’s the extent of official information they’re releasing.

Tuesday night, parents and community members were given time to speak to the board. That included the mother who claims her child was bullied.

She says her 13-year-old son had pizza sauce smeared on him before being called derogatory names. She also says one of the other students stuck his hands down his pants and then rubbed it in her son’s face saying, “you like it, don’t you?’ Her son also had a bruised lip.


In an emotional plea to the board, the boy’s mother called for action. “Things have progressed so, so badly and something needs to be done, I need to know that my 5,7 , 11, and 13 year old are safe when I send them to school,” said Misty Morales.

School officials say they are addressing it and action has been taken against one child involved.

The Superintendent says it’s a serious incident and feels sympathy for the child. “I feel for all students who have bad experiences whether it be on the bus, or in the classroom or walking to school and we try to address those, but again, because people don’t always know what the consequence is, they understandably assume that it was not dealt with, and that’s just not the case,” said Sparta Superintendent John Hendricks.

Hendricks also says a school board committee will continue this discussion in two weeks.

Police are expecting to wrap up their investigation by the end of this week.