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St. Joseph District settles bullying lawsuit

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. – The St. Joseph school district has agreed to a nearly $130,000 settlement with a family who alleged in a lawsuit that an autistic student was bullied at an elementary school.

The family said the student was the target of name-calling and other harassment at Eugene Field Elementary School during the 2015-16 and 2016-17 academic years.

The St. Joseph News-Press reports the boy’s mother testified her son was handcuffed, hit and a derogatory figure was drawn on his head. The woman said her son has been diagnosed with a condition similar to post-traumatic stress syndrome, and he suffers from anxiety.

In a statement, officials denied the allegations and said the district was prepared to defend itself in court but its insurance company elected to settle the lawsuit.

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