When parents send their children off to school every morning, they expect that their kids will be spending the day in an environment that both educates and protects them. However, Charlevoix High School is quickly gaining a reputation for failing to take appropriate action to prevent students from bullying, harassment, and abuse. As a result, the inappropriate behavior has continued to escalate, leading to some parents relocating their children to other school districts while other parents have attempted to take measures to protect their children while at school. But regardless of what actions these parents have taken, some parents and students say administrators at Charlevoix High School have neglected to take appropriate action to address the persistent problems going on at the school.
The problems at Charlevoix High School largely revolve around the conduct of players and coaches associated with the football program. There have been repeated reports of “horseplay” between members of the football team, including the use of foul and explicit language, destruction of property, hiding of property, and threats made using weapons. Likewise, there have been multiple reports of the coaching staff using abusive and explicit language towards players, mocking players, and displaying a generally negative attitude towards players.
Over the past several years, a number of parents have been forced to relocate their children to other school districts as a result of instances of bullying, harassment, and abuse by players and coaches that were brushed aside by the Charlevoix High School administration. Despite these past incidents, the administration has continuously failed to take appropriate action to discipline students and coaches guilty of this conduct and to protect victims, which is why similar events continue to occur.
The dismissive attitude is the root of the problem at Charlevoix High School and many other schools across the state and country. Coaches, especially those coaching teenagers, should understand that wins and losses are not all that matter. Instead, coaches should focus on instilling strong values in their players that will translate on and off the field, such as teamwork, respect for others, compassion, selflessness, and kindness.
Similarly, administrators, teachers, and other faculty members must prioritize the safety and emotional wellbeing of students while they are at school. Instead of taking half measures to curtail bullying and harassment, high schools must begin to spotlight bullying as a major problem. As long as Charlevoix High School continues to minimize the toxic environment that exists within the school, then these incidents of bullying, abuse, harassment, and intimidation will continue to regularly occur. Until these problems are addressed, parents of children attending Charlevoix High School will continue to have to take matters into their own hands to ensure that their children are safe at school and not dealing with the emotional damages that can and will last a lifetime.
For more information on Michigan’s Anti-Bullying laws and policies visit stopbullying.gov. If your child has been the victim of bullying, abuse, intimidation, or harassment while attending Charlevoix High School or another high school in Michigan, or if you have additional information to provide about similar incidents that have occurred, we invite you to contact our team at Grewal Law, PLLC. Our attorneys will provide compassionate counsel and aggressively advocate for your rights.
A native of Erie, Pennsylvania, Kenny McGrain began working at Grewal Law, PLLC as a legal assistant in 2017. Now an attorney at Grewal Law, Mr. McGrain has gained experience handling an assortment of different cases, including personal injury, cannabis law, and family law matters.
I went to Charlevoix High School my whole life and it was the worst experience. I was shoved into lockers in the locker room and left there for hours (there’s no service in there so I couldn’t call anyone). I was beat up in the bathroom but didn’t tell anyone because I know the school wouldn’t do anything. If I have kids they will NOT be going there unless the principal does not work there anymore.
That's terrible to hear. Schools are supposed to provide an environment where students feel safe to discuss things like this with adults and can count on those problems to be addressed in an appropriate manner; not one where students are fearful or hesitant to speak out about issues. I'm extremely sorry that you had to experience those traumatic events by yourself and didn't feel as if anyone at Charlevoix High School would help you out.
The principal and vice principal at the time of my duration there knew fully I was being assaulted and harassed daily - and did nothing. It’s no surprise to me now, even YEARS later, that it is still awful.
I'm very sorry to hear about that, James. It's extremely sad and disappointing that this has been an issue at Charlevoix High School for years and has still not been resolved. I'm hopeful that comments like yours will help spread awareness about these issues and lead to positive change.
Heather M Garcia
My son was a student at cmhs until about a month ago. He was bullied by other students and was constantly talked down to by the assistant principal and also the principal Mrs Klinger. They also were upset with the amount of days he missed do to covid quarantine without giving him the chance to catch up. I'm very happy that we switched school.
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