When schools don't take action against bullies

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When schools don't take action against bullies

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If a parent is having trouble with a school not being proactive enough in dealing with a bullying situation that has been brought to the school’s attention, above all the parent shouldn’t be disheartened for it. It’s par for the course. Schools rarely take the action that they need to. Teachers, principals, school districts, superintendents, they all seem to pretend that the problem isn’t happening, they’re not sure what may have happened, or perhaps it’s just teasing, or that unless a teacher or other school officials saw it with their own two eyes that it may not have happened exactly the way the victim is describing. The only time I’ve ever had a school district be proactive and do the right thing in expelling the student immediately was when a little girl ended up being airlifted by helicopter to a hospital because she had been beaten so badly by the aggressor. Other than that, in all the bullying cases that have come to my office, I’ve never had the school affirmatively take action to separate the children and do more to make sure the bullying doesn’t happen again. It’s difficult for schools to acknowledge that something wrong is happening because it almost necessarily implies that somebody is not doing their job. That’s one of the reasons schools tend to be so reticent from taking action. It would implicitly acknowledge that they know a problem exists. And one of the things administrators love to do is hope things get better and go away on their own. Sometimes that doesn’t happen. One of the things parents can do of course is get lawyers involved and get legal help, which is an excellent way of at least getting a consultation and determining what their options are. If parents are dissuaded from seeking legal help, one of the easiest things they can do is ask the school to change classrooms or move the child from one class to another. If that doesn’t work move the child from one school to another within the same district. That won’t be the right option for every parent, but it is a very easy way of resolving a problem that could escalate.

Watch Video: When schools don't take action against bullies by Rabeh M. A. Soofi, ...

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Rabeh M. A. Soofi

Attorney & Professor of Law

Rabeh M. A. Soofi is a managing attorney of a Los Angeles, California-based law firm.  Rabeh spent most of her career at a large national law firm of 300+ attorneys representing Fortune 500 companies, multi-national corporations, government agencies, and other high-profile clients in multi-million and billion dollar disputes.  Rabeh has a broad practice which spans multiple practice areas, serving diverse clients including individuals, families, children  and numerous others.  Rabeh is recognized as one of the “Top Women Lawyers” in Southern California by SuperLawyers and Los Angeles Magazine, as well as being honored multiple times as a “Top Attorney – Rising Star” by SuperLawyers, awarded to only 2.5% of attorneys under 40.  Rabeh is rated as a “Superb” lawyer by Avvo.com, and ranked 10 / 10 for her experience, industry recognition, and professional conduct.  Rabeh has been recognized as a “Future Star” by Euromoney’s Definitive Guide to America’s Leading Firms and Attorneys.Rabeh has provided legal commentary and interviews on a variety of legal matters and has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, Public Radio International, Yahoo! Channel Seven, Orange County’s KM 640 AM, Random House, ALM / Law.com, Digital Journal, RFI – Radio France Internationale, Times Dispatch, Malaysia Star Online, National Law Review, Georgetown University Law Center, Lexis-Nexis, American Bar Association, Los Angeles Daily Journal, Iowa Gazette, and others media outlets.Rabeh received her Juris Doctorate from the University of Notre Dame, and two undergraduate degrees in Political Science and History from the University of Michigan. She received legal training in the City of Chicago’s Corporate Counsel’s office, and is an Adjunct Professor of Law at California Law School.Rabeh has provided over 700+ hours of pro bono service to individuals, families, and children of modest means, and has s volunteered substantial time and provided financial assistance to support a variety of charitable organizations, holding leadership positions in several, including  the Boys and Girls Club, Children’s Law Center / Kid’s Voice, Homeless Shelter Legal Aid Project, Mid East West Foundation, List Project, IMANI Aid Foundation, Mid East West Foundation, Heartland Pro Bono Council, Habitat for Humanity, Wounded Warrior, and others.

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