Granite City bullying video prompts petition on changes to school policy

GRANITE CITY, Ill. – Video of a fight involving three girls prompted parents and concerned citizens to question a Granite City school’s policies on bullying.

Video of the incident, which took place November 6 after school, shows a 12-year-old Coolidge Middle School student being attacked by two other girls.

The 12-year-old is knocked to the ground and punched by one girl. As the victim gets up, she’s knocked down by the third girl. The fight occurred off-campus along a sidewalk and appears to briefly spill into the street. Cars horns can be heard in the video, as well as loud screams from the girls fighting and others yelling “stop!”

As of November 14, the video has been shared more than 200 times on Facebook and has approximately 10,000 views.

In a report appearing in the Belleville News-Democrat, the victim’s mother, Jewl Marrs, said the school’s response to the incident has been disappointing. Marrs said she’s talked with the school board and teachers and claims nothing has been done.

Marrs said her daughter is afraid to go to school due to bullying and threats.

According to Marrs, the school offered to let her daughter leave school five minutes ahead of everyone else to avoid any potential confrontations, but Marrs said she’s not satisfied, asking that the bullies be punished.

Granite City resident James Stevanus launched a petition on Change.org calling for a revision to the district’s bullying policy. More than 3,400 people have signed the online petition. Stevanus said the petition will be delivered to Granite City Community Unit School District 9 Superintendent Jim Greenwald and Mayor Edward Hagnauer.

For his part, Superintendent Greenwald said the district deals with bullying and other student misconduct on a case-by-case basis, adding that the school will address the issue and take steps to protect students involved. He said the incident has been sensationalized by the media

Meanwhile, the Granite City Police Department confirmed at least one arrest was made regarding the fight. It’s unclear if any charges were filed as a result.