A student at a Bayside middle school was allegedly the victim of months of sexual harassment at the hands of a fellow student and the school did little to help her.
According to a report from the New York Post, starting in September 2019, an eighth-grade student at M.S. 158 Marie Curie repeatedly asked his female classmate to have sex and provide her bra size. In October, the victim’s father alleged that the student pulled down his own pants in a classroom and told another classmate “to get the girl to join him.”
The teen’s parents were irate and said the school did not properly reprimand harassment and bullying. The victim’s father told the Post that school administrators never informed them about the situation.
“They gave him detention and just put him back in the class the next day and it got worse from there,” her father told the Post.
Classmates corroborated the teen’s story and said the verbal harassment turned physical in November. The boy allegedly demanded sex, touched her leg and groin and “grabbed her from behind.” After classmates told a teacher, the school contacted the girl’s parents.
Her parents called the police, who confirmed that they arrested the boy on Nov. 26. According to a police source, the 111th Precinct charged the boy with forcible touching, a class A misdemeanor in New York.
QNS reached out to M.S. 158 but the school declined to comment. It is unclear whether the boy still attends the school.
In a statement to investigators, the girl wrote that her classmate “disgusting questions like what my bra size is and if I want to ‘smash. I feel like whatever I say doesn’t matter.” She was allegedly scared to tell the school or her parents but eventually told a doctor after the November incident.
The girl’s parents hired a lawyer back in October.
“Students deserve safe and supportive environments, and schools must report all incidents and notify parents. We are looking into this further and will take any action necessary,” said DOE spokesperson Miranda Barbot in a statement.
According to a chancellor-issued regulation in October 2019, school principals are required to assign one staff member as the official Sexual Harassment Prevention (SHP) liaison. The liaison’s responsibilities include receiving reports of student-to-student sexual harassment and serving as a resource for students and staff.
The regulation further states that any staff member who witnessed sexual harassment or has any knowledge of incidents must verbally report it to the SHP liaison within one school day and also submit a complaint form.
Students, parents and individuals other than staff can also report student-to-student abuse verbally or in writing and can also submit the official complaint form.