Claiming Persistent Bullying, Iowa Teen Sues School District
The Ankeny Community School District is being sued by 18-year-old Audrey Vacek who claims she was bullied for two years by a fellow student. She says the bullying led to an assault that has left her with permanent brain damage. Vacek has stated the school district was aware of the bullying and did nothing to make it stop.
Vacek says the bully was a fellow female student. She tells KCCI the girl,
Turned around and punched me in the jaw, and it caused my head to slam into a concrete wall. It was just a severe concussion, and then it was complex migraines and post-concussion syndrome, and now they've just determined that it's probably never going to go away, and I'm going to struggle for the rest of my life.
Audrey's mother, Katie, says they were told,
the best thing to do was to ignore it and avoid it and it would get better. Instead, it just got worse.
The Vacek's have filed a lawsuit against the bully's father, a teacher, high school vice principal and guidance counselor, high school principal, and the Ankeny Community School District.
The Ankeny School District has released this statement:
Ankeny Schools is sympathetic to the physical and emotional issues described in the student's reported experience. Bullying behavior is taken seriously and not condoned.
There are policies and procedures in place for students who feel they experience bullying.
When concerns or issues regarding student conduct arise, Ankeny Community Schools administrators investigate any reports and follow policy set by the Board of Education, based on the circumstances.
We investigate every report and do not take any allegation lightly.
Ankeny Schools has been and continues to be committed to the safety and security of all students.
Vacek, now scared to return to the school, is taking online classes. The girl she says bullied her had to give talks about anti-bullying as part of the probation she received for the assault on Vacek. Those talks garnered her a school spirit award.