In a heartbreaking development, a New Jersey school district has reached a settlement of $9.1 million with the family of Mallory Grossman, a 12-year-old student who took her own life after enduring relentless bullying. This devastating incident occurred after Mallory suffered from bullying for approximately nine months.
The parents, Dianne and Seth Grossman, filed a wrongful death lawsuit in 2018 against Rockaway Township, its school district, and school board, alleging that despite multiple pleas and communications, the school administrators failed to address the bullying, leading to Mallory’s untimely death. This lawsuit has sparked a national debate on the issue of bullying and teen suicide.
Bruce Nagel, the attorney representing the Grossman family, hopes that the substantial settlement will send a strong message to schools across the country, urging them to take proactive measures to prevent bullying and its devastating consequences. This landmark settlement draws attention to the urgent need to address rising youth suicides.
Mallory Grossman’s tragic case sheds light on the distressing trend of youth suicide attempts, which has been on the rise in recent years. The COVID-19 pandemic has further worsened the situation as schools shifted to online learning, leading to increased mental health challenges among children and teenagers.
It is important to note that Mallory’s bullying experiences were not confined to the school premises but also extended to social media platforms. Apps like Snapchat became tools for her bullies to cause emotional harm, intensifying her distress.
The lawsuit brought to light the heart-wrenching details of Mallory’s torment, including hurtful taunts and comments about her life. On the day before her suicide, Mallory was publicly humiliated in the school cafeteria, adding to her unbearable suffering.
Despite their immense grief, the Grossman family has established a nonprofit organization called “Mallory’s Army” to raise awareness about the dangers of bullying and advocate for change in schools and communities. The settlement will empower them to continue their mission of educating the public and promoting a culture of compassion and empathy.
Mallory Grossman was remembered by her family as a vibrant and creative girl who loved cheerleading, gymnastics, and crafting. Her family hopes to prevent similar tragedies in the future by addressing the oversight of Mallory’s hypersensitivity to bullying.
This devastating case serves as an urgent call to action for parents, teachers, and administrators. It is essential to remain vigilant and recognize the signs of distress in children. The American Psychological Association offers guidance on fostering resilience in children and creating safe environments with open dialogues. Together, we can protect young minds from the devastating consequences of bullying.