Parents of Tapestry Charter student question discipline protocol

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BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) A fight inside Tapestry Charter School was completely captured on school surveillance video, but the parents of a high school student disagree with the school’s handling of it.

“Everybody seems to ignore the fact that bullying is serious,” said Christina Clark-Conerly, who says it was a year and a half of bullying at Tapestry Charter High School which caused her 15 year old daughter to lash back and fight for the first time on March 6.

But the high school sophomore ended up on the verge of expulsion, while the other student is back at school. The parents have asked for the State Education Department to investigate the way this was handled, the lack of what they consider a proper hearing, and even the way school faculty restrained Christina’s daughter after the fight. “She was bear-hugged and dragged across the floor by the principal,” said Clark-Conerly. “That’s not okay.”

The entire incident was captured on the schools’ surveillance video, but the parents and school see it differently. 

In a statement, the school’s excutive director, Ed Klapper said:
“Tapestry’s first priority is the health and safety of all our students. To that end, the school, in consultation with faculty, staff and families, has certain rules and procedures it follows to ensure safety. The accusations made in this case are without merit, and misrepresent the facts about what happened. 

The school is prohibited by law from sharing specifics about this case. If, however, the family consents to releasing pertinent information, it will quickly become obvious that the school’s actions were necessary, appropriate, and in compliance with the law. We welcome any review of our policies and procedures.” 

Sam Radford, an advocate for the parents in this case, called a news conference calling for a broader investigation into disiplinary policies at Tapestry Charter School. “If you got a student who has never been in trouble before. there’s a reason why they’ve never been in trouble before. there’s a reason why the student never fought before. There’s a reason why. So if something rises to the level where the student all of a sudden fights, who reasonabley would not assume that something scared that student to the point that they felt like something was going on that they had to fight.”

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