We have shared stories before about special needs kids being bullied. Kathy King’s daughter, Monika, experienced the same thing. She was bullied because she has epilepsy and Asperger’s syndrome.
Kathy could tell that Monika was different from a very young age, and she was put into special education classes from the beginning. Monika was happy for a short while until the bullying started. As Kathy wrote in the Journal Sentinel:
“My daughter was put through hell—inside and outside the classroom. She endured frequent bullying, harassment and physical abuse. A time of life that should be marked by growth and exploration became a period of shame and pain. The torment caused her to shut down emotionally. She was afraid to go school. Her grades suffered. Her life lacked joy and laughter.”
One day Monika came home with a red mark on her face, saying that a teacher slapped her. Despite addressing the problem with school officials and even child protective services, nothing was done.
Kathy then started homeschooling her, but the damage of all of the problems she had in public school still haunted her, making it nearly impossible for her to do her work. That’s when Kathy decided to enroll her in Wisconsin Virtual Academy, which turned things around.
In just one year, her reading level jumped up several grade levels. She now has goals to graduate and perhaps attend college—something Kathy never thought would happen in public school.
“Not only does my daughter not fear learning, but she is actually excelling in school. She is comfortable logging in to classes on her own, interacting with students and teachers during class, as well as completing her assignments on time.”
Kathy is now a big advocate for online education.
“As our society continues to tackle the bullying problem, I want to let everyone know that online education plays a valuable role in an overall solution. Wisconsin Virtual is an important option for students and families that are going through what we experienced. We gave it a shot and honestly couldn’t have asked for more.”
If your child has experienced bullying because of their special needs, share your story with us.
You can also read more stories about kids who were bullied and then escaped to an online school.