Parents continue to voice frustrations over behavior at Bettendorf Middle School as ‘incident’ occurs at high school

Published: May. 27, 2022 at 12:01 AM CDT
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - Students, parents and employees packed the room at Thursday night’s Bettendorf Community School District board meeting.

Many in the district continue to speak out about student behavior at Bettendorf Middle School. All of this comes as the district notified parents on Thursday of an “incident” involving police at Bettendorf High School.

In a video obtained by TV6 News, students can be seen fighting in a hallway. BHS senior and Student Board Representative Ethan Geifman addressed Thursday’s incident in his report at the meeting.

“If you did not know there was a massive brawl, fight, that broke out at the high school involving at least 100 students,” Geifman said. “Seeing what’s going on in our middle school and in light of national events. I believe our school needs more support. We need security guards and mentors. We need support from our parents and our community. We need change.”

A BHS sophomore said she’s heard students and teachers consider leaving the district.

“I have heard from multiple teachers that they do not feel safe,” Lauren Ballard said. “It’s going to be an interesting school without any students or teachers.”

On the agenda for Thursday’s meeting was an update to a workshop for solutions to address student behavior on Wednesday night. One parent said they are upset by the actions of the district regarding the event.

“I attend the workshop [Thursday] and was disappointed that the media was not allowed inside,” David Fuglseth said. “As many of you are aware, transparency, or lack thereof, has plagued this district in the past. This was just a further example of that lack of transparency.”

The superintendent said they still need more time to present more from the workshop and mentioned some solutions already being implemented at the BMS.

“We’ve been busy [on Thursday] trying to cull through all of the information,” Dr. Michelle Morse said. “As we shared last night, we have put additional staff over at the middle school. We’ve had additional administration over there.”

Meanwhile, Sarah Farra, a paraeducator at BMS and parent in the district, was at the workshop Thursday, as well as an additional meeting for staff earlier that day. She said as negative behavior continues at the middle school, it puts her students in danger.

“In helping to guide some of our parents in finding the good things for our district, it was a little discouraging to experience yet another situation where we had a safety concern with a student.”

Regarding Thursday’s incident, TV6 reached out to the teacher’s union, the Bettendorf Education Association, which declined to comment. While Bettendorf Police Department did not immediately respond to our request for comment

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