What's bugging you, Mid-Michigan? Parents in Jackson County say bullying is bugging them, and they want to raise awareness about the devastating effect it can have on kids.
News 10 spoke to parents say they've tried everything, and don't know what more they can do to stop the bullying. They hope by bringing attention to the problem, it will cause school administrators, and other parents, to take bullying more seriously.
"He shouldn't have to get up every morning dreading it, and I shouldn't have to get up every morning worrying about it all day long," said Kerrie Bliss. She says her 6th grade son is bullied every day at R.W. Kidder Middle School in the Northwest Community School district.
Mom Jennifer Slawinkski says her 6th grade son was also bullied at Kidder Middle School.
"My oldest has been assaulted twice this school year," said Slawinski. "The first one, another students grabbed him from behind and threw him on the ground and started kicking him in his ribs. The second time someone hit him in the face and gave him a black eye."
Jamie Horning says her daughter, a 6th grader at Jackson's Frost Elementary School, has been dealing with bullies for the past 6 months.
"As time goes on and you don't see anything changing, you see your child's grades dropping, calling from school sick, going to bed every night crying - it takes a toll," Horning said.
Now the moms are taking a stand against bullying, and demanding action from school administrators.
"Sit the kids down, have an assembly, and say if you're doing these things --- it's not only wrong, but it's illegal," said Bliss. "And there are the consequences."
Schools really need to take their no tolerance policies seriously, really crack down," Horning agreed.
The moms say fellow parents also need to step up, and talk to their kids about the harmful effects of bullying.
"I would like parents, staff, and administrators just to be on the same page," Slawinksi said. "You shouldn't have kids not wanting to go to school because they're afraid of what's going to happen. That's not what school's about, that's the sad part."
Dan Brooks, the principal at Kidder Middle School says the school investigates every reported case of bullying, and then does what it can to help. The staff and teachers there will also take part in a district-wide bullying seminar this August.
However, the moms are really hoping for some type of educational assembly for the students, not just the staff. Principal Brooks says he's open to look into doing something like that.
Bullying obviously isn't just an issue for these two schools. Parents around the area have emailed New 10 with concerns about their kids being bullied as well.
Experts say it's important to take bullying seriously, and not just brush it off as something kids need to "tough out." Bullying can leave kids with deep emotional scars and really affect their sense of self-worth.