It was when Jacobe’s parents found his suicide note that they became certain the school knew about their son’s treatment and didn’t make any effort to intervene or notify them. The school denies any knowledge of the bullying, but Jacobe’s death is still raising important questions. In New York and many other states, schools legally have to report bullying to the state education department, but not to the bullied child’s parents.
The family is now pushing for a law that would require schools to inform parents when bullying happens. It was only when Christine Taras returned from an errand to find her 13-year-old son Jacobe dead that she or his father even knew there was a problem that he was dealing with at school.
“He was being punched, kicked, pushed,” said Jacobe’s father Richard Taras. “Being called gay, being told to kill himself every day.”
According to State Senator James Tedisco, Jacobe would probably still be alive if his parents had gotten the chance to intervene. That’s why Tedisco chose to sponsor the new legislation which and name it Jacobe’s Law. The law has passed twice in the New York Senate but is stuck in the state assembly.
Photo via James Tedisco