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Special Report: Bully Problems

POSTED: Friday, May 1, 2009 - 5:45am

UPDATED: Wednesday, February 17, 2010 - 2:23pm

11 year-old El Paso student Tyler Cardoza says he knows first hand how bad bullying can be.

Tyler, a 5th grader at Tierra del Sol Elementary in East El Paso, says he was a victim of bullying his entire 4th grade year and again, this year.

"They would call me a psycho and they would call me a crybaby and they would call me gay." says Cardoza.

Tyler, says three boys were picking on him and those boys wouldn't let up. So his grandmother went to talk to his teacher.

"The teacher confirmed what he had told us that the kids were bullying him and harassing him and that the kids wouldn't listen to her and she said as a matter of fact, they don't listen to anybody." says Stella Cardoza, Tyler's grandmother.

Stella says she went and talked to the principal of the school. She says he would not discipline the boys until Tyler would give him the names of the students who were bullying him. She says Tyler wouldn't because he was too scared.

Then, one day she walked into the families bathroom and found Tyler there crying. He had his face buried in a towel because he didn't want anyone to hear his cries.

"I asked him what was wrong and if he was ok and he just cried and he told me, 'I just can't take this anymore Nana. They bully me all day long everyday, they call me names, they mistreat me and I just, just can't anymore Grandma,I just can't.'" recalls Stella.

Newschannel 9 talked with Janise Pries, District-Wide Director of Counseling for YISD. She could not talk specifically about Tyler's situation but she says district counselors are very focused on the issue of bullying.

"What we do is, we tell them, you physically say, stop. Walk away and if that doesn't work then report it to an adult." says Pries.

Tyler says he did that, but to no avial.

"The bully is constantly picking on the victim on a daily basis or a weekly basis and this is what wears down the victim and this is what causes a lot of internal psychological distress." says child psychologist Dr. Rudy Basurto.

Dr. Basurto says most bullies are not acting alone.

"They kinda feel empowered because they are not being caught and they are not being disciplined and that is why it is so important for the schools to stay involved and for parents to have some sort of limits and consequences and punishments for the bullying." says Basura.

As for Tyler Cardoza, he is now being homeschooled by his grandmother.

She says he is doing much better. In the fall, he may be going to a private school.

If your child needs help, you can contact Dr. Basurto at www.amanecer-ep.com

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