End Bullying After Suicide of Elementary Student

Target: Cynthia A. Jafary, President of the Raleigh County School Board in West Virginia

Goal: Investigate rampant bullying at elementary school and demand that schools crack down on this harassment.

Parents of a 9-year-old boy who hung himself said his suicide was a result of bullying he was subjected to by kids at his school. According to one study, West Virginia is ranked third among states with the most bullying problems, and over 3,000 middle and high school students from the state reported being bullied last year. Sophia Soak Creek Elementary School claims that it has not received complaints of bullying, but this sad story tells another tale.

The fourth grader was found dead September 10 by his sister who wanted to cheer him up with a frog she had found. His family knew the boy was teased but said they did not realize the bullying had gotten so bad, though they noticed a change in him in the days leading up to his death. The bullying was said to occur both at school and outside the boy’s home, making it difficult for him to escape the torment.

Bullying has to be addressed at a young age. West Virginia law protects victims of bullying and schools need to have a conversation with their students about what that means. Students need to know that bullying will not be tolerated, and teachers need to know the signs so they can catch it when it happens. Opening up a conversation about this now is more crucial than ever. Ask the school board to investigate the prevalence of bullying at Sophia Soak Creek Elementary and work with schools to open a conversation with its students about this troubling matter.


Dear President Jafary,

We were all devastated to hear of a 9-year-old boy who recently committed suicide due to alleged bullying. Steps need to be taken in order to prevent atrocities like this from happening again. Though Sophia Soak Creek Elementary officials said they have heard zero reports of bullying, it is obvious there is a problem. West Virginia was rated third among states with the worst bullying problems by a WalletHub survey that measured the prevalence, impact, and prevention of bullying in 45 states.

Being bullied at a young age effects the way the brain develops and makes it difficult to learn. While school boards are required to establish anti-bullying policies for schools, more needs to be done to prevent this harassment as it can have very severe consequences. This boy was not the first to take his life for such reasons but he was certainly one of the youngest. Please investigate the frequency and severity of bullying at Sophia Soak Creek Elementary and encourage schools under your jurisdiction to be proactive in recognizing when harassment is happening.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Diego Grez

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  1. kristin peterson says:

    This is so heartbreaking!
    Such a tragic loss of life for a boy who had his entire life ahead of him.
    Something needs to be done to prevent this from happening again.
    Children need to be taught from a young age that bullying is wrong and anyone who bullies no matter the age needs to be charged with battery and harassment charges.



  3. Time to take parents of bullies, and bullies to psychiatrists! Time that these abusers are charged with murder.

  4. The school and the parents of these bullies are to blame too! How can the school be so blind that this is going on? This should have been reported to the parents of these creeps! I agree with the other poster! Charge them all with murder!

  5. This is horrible. Schools need to be accountable. It is their job to keep the children safe from harm while on the school grounds. Someone needs to take accountability for this loss. I suggest the principle. Put them in jail for life. Also, parents of the bully kids should be accountable as well for teaching their children to be bullies. Shame on all of you.

  6. Angela Rabon says:

    Parents are not doing enough to talk to their kids to find out if their kids are bullies, and schools just are ignoring bullying because they do not want to deal with the issue! It is happening in ALL schools to too many students. ONE IS TOO MANY STUDENTS!! These schools need to expel any student for bullying for the remainder of the year, and they need hidden cameras with audio and video in every nook and cranny of school property to prove which kids are bullies. If one bullies another, it should go on their permanent record so that it will follow them to college so that their behavior will be a factor for a college to decide if they want that student at their school, or not. I realize once you are a certain age your record is clear but maybe it should not be. These kids know what they are doing is wrong and they need some serious consequences! Whatever works to stop hurting kids, and taking lives, is what I am for!!

  7. Gen Lovyet Agustsson says:

    school to jail? come on people school is supoosed to be about education not non-educational stuff. a guy named evan perry who died of suicide at age 15 due to being bullied at school or other types of reasons.

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