WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Dozens of students walked out of the classroom today protesting the Tamaqua Area School District administration’s handling of a reported hazing incident involving the football team.
Students in the High School simply walked out. Students who spoke with Eyewitness News say they want to make sure their voices are heard.
Dozens of Tamaqua Area High School students walked out Friday. They say the district is ignoring other acts of bullying and harassment.
“I got bumped into the lockers and stuff and you know I told the principal about it and then another kid just came up to me during lunch and stuff said do you want me to beat you up after school and stuff,” explained Johnathan Nunemacher.
Nunemaker tells Eyewitness News he moved back to the district last week and continues to be bullied.
“After school, you know, I was walking home and all of sudden the kids at the park, waiting for me and throws me into the concrete. Smashes my head right off the wall,” said Nunemacher.
Eyewitness News reached out to the principal who was unavailable for comment.
The student walkout comes as the district is handling a hazing incident with the football team where multiple students have been suspended.
“The school won’t even say what happened, they’re just saying like we’re handling it. And this isn’t the first incident that something like this has happened and the school is just brushing it under the rug,” stated Miranda Hedrick, 9th grade at Tamaqua High School.
“People suggest we sweep it under the rug is insane,” said Larry Wittig.
Wittig says to any student, see something say something.
“They don’t bother giving any specifics to any authoritative figure or follow through on it to make sure that the perpetrator(s) are properly disciplined, we can’t do anything about that,” explained Wittig.
Sitting on the board for 25 years Wittig says board directors and the administration is committed to responding to each allegation brought forward by a student of bullying or harassment.
“If you have specific concerns or experiences that were devasting to you and your way of life in the school that needs to be addressed,” said Wittig.
Some of the students returned to the classroom today after the walkout. Others went home.
According to the superintendent the school has not been locked down. School district officials have confirmed to Eyewitness News that suspensions have been made.