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Family pulls daughter out of Aurora charter school due to bullying

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DENVER — A Denver family is demanding change at a metro area charter school after several reports of bullying.

Grace Mason is your typical fifth grade girl. She loves to read, do math and play games with her friends, but she says school is becoming a big problem for her.

“Sometimes I come home crying when the bullying gets too out of hand,” Grace told FOX31. “It’s just not fun whatsoever to me.”

Grace attends High Point Academy, a charter school in Aurora. Grace’s mom, Noelle, says she fought to get her in. Now, she can’t wait to get her out.

“I’m livid,” Noelle said.

Wednesday Grace came home from school with bruises on her arm from an incident on the playground. Grace initially reported it as bullying, but now says she isn’t sure whether she was pushed off the monkey bars or if it was an accident. Either way, Noelle is not happy about the way the school handled the situation.

“[My teachers] say just walk it off. It doesn’t matter. You’ll get over it,” Grace said.

“They just don’t seem to care,” Noelle said.

Noelle says her daughter has at least three other documented cases of physical and emotional abuse against her daughter since she started at HPA in the fall. She does not think the school staff does enough to prevent bullying attacks.

“The more [the bullies] see you getting hurt by the words the more they do it,” Grace said.

In a statement to FOX31, HPA’s Principal Keri Melmed said, “When a parent or a student voices concern about a potential bullying situation we take it very seriously and investigate it thoroughly in accordance with our policy. Student safety is our number one priority and our entire staff is committed to a safe and respectful learning environment.”

The Masons have pulled Grace from the charter school. She is hoping to transfer to a Denver Public School. If there is no room, she will finish the fifth grade online.