Mother claims daughter suspended for defending herself against bullies

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- A mother claims Whitehaven High School has not been doing enough to keep her daughters safe from bullies on the school bus.

Ashley Perry said Whitehaven expelled her older daughter for trying to keep one of the alleged bullies from touching her when the bus reached school Thursday.

"It's going to take them harming my children for the school to do something about it," Perry said.

Perry's daughters are a junior and freshman at the school. The freshman has special needs and health problems.

Perry said a group of girls on the bus called them names, threatened to hurt them, and hit them with their backpacks.

Perry got in touch with the school's principal, who had the girls file a written complaint.

She said an administrator talked to one of the alleged bullies, but then an Instagram message appeared online, reportedly calling Perry's daughter stupid and including emojis of guns.

Perry kept her freshman daughter home from school Thursday because of the post, which she sent to the principal.

Perry said her older daughter was sitting in the front of the bus like the school told her to Thursday. She said the girls began taunting her daughter from the back of the bus.

When the bus arrived at school, she said one of the girls prepared to fight her daughter, but her daughter told the girl not to put her hands on her.

Perry said things escalated, and the school suspended her daughter for ten days.

Shelby County Schools released a statement that said, "This situation is currently under investigation. Shelby County Schools takes all incidents such as this very seriously, as it's our goal to provide a safe educational environment got all of our students."

Perry said she's planning to have her younger daughter moved to a special needs bus, and is trying to fight her older daughter's suspension.

"Being the bis sister, she's going to stand up for her sister," Perry said.


  • Brandi

    It is always the kids who are taking up for themselves (when the school system won’t) that get in trouble for facing their bullies! Old school rule, “don’t start the fight, only take up for yourself” parents of bullies should be ashamed of themselves and embarrassed! This is just like a disease, and parents and the school system should be more responsible when handling these situations!!!

    • M. Donald

      When I was going to Ridgeway middle I had to fight my bully to get my bully off me and this is after I told the school administrators multiple times. Oh yeah and I still got suspended even after I told them everything again.

  • hkwesson

    We got some smart dumb people running our schools system it should be the bullies getting expelled not suspended idiots where are your children ?

  • Kathryn LeLaurin. Ph.D.

    School personnel should be taught how to analyze and understand these situations, as well as that ‘blaming the victim’ puts them on the side of the perpetrator(s). That’s not what you’re supposed to do. Bullies need to receive consequences, including considerable training, even role play, to learn how to behave appropriately. This should go along with school wide positive rules, social skills training, character & good behavior lessons, etc. The bus drivers need to be trained as well – along with the cafeteria workers, gym teachers, custodians, all school administrators (including secretaries) and of course, teachers. Surely we can come to agreement about community standards of conduct and systems for disseminating it.

  • davis

    this story if not true,the school did exactly what they should have.the student was not being bullied ,but in fact was the bully.that morning it was her who started the altercation between her and the other student.she had been faulsly accusing the young girls of bullying her and her little sister,when in accuality they were helping her sister while she stood there and watch as she was almost trampled by the mass of student boarding the bus.the comment posted on the picture was not ment for her sister nbut for her.the girls had grown tired of being accused of doing something they were not doing,and one spoke up the only way she saw fit.the school did exactly what they should have to a bully trying to be the victom.

  • Neil Graves

    Pull the tapes from the bus to see what actually did occur on the bus then get statements from those who witnessed the events. Also, check the social media accounts of the bullies and the young lady being bullied to see what has transpired there. If the bullied teen hasn’t shown any signs of aggressiveness before now then she truly was defending herself that day. If not then we may have a reason for the suspension. More than anything the tapes from the bus will show what has really been going on.

  • Don

    When my family moved to Collierville in 1947, my second day in school I was challenged by a Bully in the grade higher that I was, and he became best friends because I dotted his eye. I didn’t have any bully from then all.

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