December 1, 2021

NASHVILLE, Tenn – Tarhiya Sledge 12-year-old middle school student committed suicide after she was bullied. According to her parents, she attended J. F. Kennedy Middle School in Antioch until October 25. Later they took her out of the school due to the alleged bullying. Wanting to help their child and protect her from bullying they transferred Tarhiya to Margaret Allen Middle School, where she was enrolled until tragedy took place. Unfortunately, these procedures did not yield results and the child committed suicide on November 17.

Davidson County’s medical examiner tells that at least a week is needed before they can determine an official cause of death.

Sledge’s stepfather, Mario Glover, posted a message on his Facebook:

“she was confident that the school authorities who were promising to help her, would do it. In the end, they let her down.”

In turn, experts talk about the difficulty in controlling behavior outside the classroom. Most of the bullying takes place during outside of the class; bus stops, hallways, restrooms, lunch, etc.

Bullying is one of the most difficult areas of violence against children. It becomes harder to deal with it especially with the ubiquitous role that internet and mobile technology play in their life, which permits bullying to continue night and day. Prevention starts with educating children about the harmful effects that their actions can have on others. Also, it is very important that everyone working with or raising children is fully aware of the challenges and impact of bullying and can provide timely, meaningful guidance.

Communities have to protect children. Parents, teachers, bus drivers, and classmates must be vigil. If you see it, report it. More anti-bullying programs need to be launched at every school. There must be strict consequences for those who bully and harass classmates.

All parents ought to contact school authorities and ask about their anti-bullying program. Communicate your concerns to your child as well. Guide them on how to handle the behavior and possible ways to inform about the incident as soon as possible.

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Aida Maes