Shanequa Jackson is her mother's pride and joy so when Sholanda Merrieweather heard about another girl at Thomson High School bullying her, she worried. (WRDW-TV / Oct. 18, 2011)
News 12 at 6 o'clock / Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2011
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- A national study shows that nearly one in five students have been a victim of bullying at school.
Although many schools have put anti-bullying policies in place, it is still difficult for teachers to stop bullying once it leaves the classroom.
Shanequa Jackson is her mother's pride and joy so when Sholanda Merrieweather heard about another girl at Thomson High School bullying her, she worried.
"The school didn't inform anyone about what was going on. This could have been stopped," Merrieweather said.
She says the school principal never called her.
According to McDuffie County School Policy, bullying is a punishable offense and school personnel are supposed to call parents if it involves their child.
Merrieweather's concern grew when she started going through her daughter's phone. She says she found threatening texts from the bully to her daughter.
She says the bully ended up coming to her house with friends -- and had to call the police.
"I don't think it should have gotten that far, especially when you bring 20 or more girls to my house," Merrieweather said.
School Superintendent Jim LeBruhn said he is looking into the incident.
"We do all we can do to prevent and intervene," he said.
School officials say they need parents' help when bullying goes on outside of the classroom.
"Get as much information as you can. The more information we can gather, the more we can intervene and prevent it from accelerating," LeBruhn said.
Merrieweather is more than ready to work with the school and other parents.
"I'm still worried to this day those girls are still picking," she said.
An anti-bullying law went in effect this fall in Georgia. Under the new law:
-Students are recommended for alternative education after a third bullying offense.
-Each school is responsible for the discipline of students in house before a third offense.
-Schools are also required to contact parents if their child is involved in bullying.