‘Absolutely horrific:’ Principal, parent react to video of DC middle school beating

A cellphone recording of a middle school student being beaten by another has prompted the principal of a D.C. school to send a letter to parents and families about what happened and how the school is responding.

Charles Eliot-Lemon G. Hine Middle School Principal Marlene Magrino confirms in her letter that the beating took place Tuesday afternoon inside the Northeast D.C. school following dismissal.

“The altercation occurred quickly in the presence of other students who recorded the incident,” Magrino writes. She told parents that the administrators are working on disciplinary action and mediation.

A parent of twin sixth-graders at Eliot-Hine said his son was assaulted outside the school in September and his daughter has been repeatedly sexually harassed and recently pushed into a locker by an older male student.

“My twins are still bullied daily,” Christopher Boesen said. “There have been a whole, host of events that have happened throughout the year, and we’re constantly told ‘We’re staffing up now, it’s getting better, things will be fine, bear with us, be patient,’ and we just don’t have much patience left. The events are still happening, as we saw with this video and possibly getting worse,” Boesen said.

Boesen told school resource officers that he believed his son was assaulted by a student from Eastern High School, but no attempt was made to identify the attacker. He said his wife witnessed his daughter being shoved into a locker and was told by a nearby teacher it was, “No big deal.”

Boesen identified the victim in Tuesday’s videotaped beating as a friend of his daughter’s.

“It’s absolutely horrific. No kid should ever be subjected to that, either a victim of the beating or watching that,” he said.

Magrino wrote that, “The safety of our students is paramount at all times, and we are committed to providing out students with a learning environment that is loving and conducive to their success.”

But Boesen insists that the school can do much better.

“They need to have management. They need to have staff. They need to have resources, and they need to protect every kid in that school. And until that’s done, until they can say these kids are safe they haven’t done their job,” he said.

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