Mother Charged After Confronting Child's School Bullies
Jamie Louise Rathburn stormed a South Carolina school during morning drop-off to confront several third-graders.
The mother approached a group of students waiting outside her son's classroom on May 17 and warned them to stop messing with her child before storming off, the Greenville News reports.
Police were only alerted to the incident when Rathburn later posted a seven-minute 'video rant' on Facebook admitting she'd had a stern word to a number of kids before class.
A review of CCTV footage showed the mother "lift her finger in a pointing manner and circle around as if making sure all the kids heard her and were listening," while a teacher told officers that Rathburn yelled at the group and threatened that she "was going to find them and their mums," according to the report.
She was arrested and charged with interfering, disrupting or disturbing schools and was released on a US$1,000 bond to from court next week.
The video has since been removed and Rathburn has apologised, but she is now banned from school grounds.
“I can’t go eat lunch with my children,” Rathburn said. “I can’t watch them on field day. As a class mum, that’s devastating.”
She told Greenville News that she doesn't know if her son's bullies were ever punished because the school has refused to hand over documents related to the situation, citing privacy concerns.
She confirmed that she first sent an email to her son's teacher in December explaining that one of her child's classmates had picked on him about his hair.
From there, it escalated. He was called names, hit with a computer and pulled backwards off a slide by his throat, Rathburn told the Greenville News.
The final straw was last month when the administrators separated her son on the playground so they could keep an eye on the situation.
It was the next day that she confronted the children before class.
“I am absolutely ashamed of myself for the actions of walking up into that school," Rathburn said.
“You know, I owe the parents, the children and the staff an apology for that. Absolutely, it was wrong. But honestly, I don’t know how I could have gotten my message across any other way.