“My husband and I had noticed that she was spending all her time in her room.
“I went upstairs to speak to her one evening. She said ‘I don’t want to be here any more.’
“I said, ‘what do you mean you don’t want to be here, you mean in your bedroom?’
“And she said, ‘No, I don’t want to live anymore.’”
The Bridge of Don Academy pupil was brought to this low point due to the cruel torment of bullies at her school.
The problem was so bad, her mum made the decision to pull her out of school for two years.
But now, her mother has spoken out in a plea to get the school to take action and end the problem once and for all.
Years of bullying hell at Bridge of Don Academy has taken major toll
The “campaign of terror” her daughter has endured has been so severe that she’s required a course of counselling.
The pupil became a target for two boys in 2021.
After three months of bullying, her mother took her out of school.
The girl remained at home for the rest of that school year.
She tried returning the following year, but with the same offenders immediately targeting her again, after a few days she went home, and stayed home for the rest of that school year too.
While at home, the bullying went online, with the boys targeting their victim on social media.
Her mother had to reduce her working hours in order to look after her at home.
Bridge of Don Academy pupil told ‘everyone wants you dead’
Having started in-person learning again at Bridge of Don Academy in August, the pupil is currently at school on a reduced schedule. She makes sure she arrives and leaves class first, to avoid her tormentors.
“They look out for her constantly,” the mum told The P&J. “If they know she’s in a class, they’ll be there waiting outside the door.
“She’s petrified of them.”
The bullying ranges from pushing her around to screaming in her face and making verbal threats.
The mum told us that they had told her daughter: “Go and kill yourself”, “no-one loves you, no-one wants you around”, and “everyone wants you dead”.
After the pupil’s mother had meetings with Bridge of Don Academy, including an Aberdeen City Council quality improvement officer, she was assured the school would take measures to ensure her child’s safety upon returning to the school in August.
However, the bullies immediately targeted the pupil once more, including telling her she would get her “face smashed in”.
“Her anxiety and mental health were out of control, the things they said to her.”
The mother accuses Bridge of Don Academy of “brushing the issue under the carpet”, and of failing in their duty to protect her child.
“My daughter has lost her education for the last two years because of these boys,” she told The P&J. “It’s heartbreaking. It’s so upsetting to see such a bright girl miss out on so much.”
Teacher caught boys in the act
She said it had been an ongoing battle with the school to get work sent home so her daughter could keep up.
“After about eight months, we started getting English, maybe twice a month, other than that there was nothing sent home to her.”
She added: “What made me so angry was that the school didn’t believe her when she told them what was happening. Not until a teacher caught one of the boys in the act.”
What was already a serious situation became even more so, said the mum.
“One day, not long after she first said she wanted to die, I went up to her room and she shouted ‘don’t come in, don’t come in’.
“She was just sitting there, saying ‘I just want to go, I just want to die’.
“The following day she ran away from home. There was a police search, and she was eventually tracked down that night.”
‘For more than two years they’ve been making her life hell. When is it going to stop?’
The mum told us that the school had said her daughter wasn’t entitled to home-schooling – “they said they didn’t see the issue” – and that her daughter’s head of year told her that the best solution would be for her to move school.
“Why should she have to move school? This is her school. This is where her friends are.
“The school just say the boys have been ‘punished’. But absolutely nothing has changed. Those boys are getting an education, and it’s my daughter who’s having to go without one.
“It feels as though the school just can’t be bothered doing anything.
“For more than two years they’ve been making her life hell. When is it going to stop?”
An Aberdeen City Council spokesman said: “We take the safety of all our young people seriously. The school is fully aware of the situation and is in regular contact with the family.”
If you’ve been affected by issues raised in this piece, Samaritans are available to offer support day or night, 365 days a year. You can call them for free on 116 123, email them at email@example.com, or visit samaritans.org to find your nearest branch.