Delanie Marcotte is only in the fifth grade, but she has every parent in America listening after her emotional speech about bullying went viral.
Marcotte says she felt compelled to speak out because of the bullying she saw and faced herself at her school in New Hampshire.
She faced down her local school board trustees, and shared a heartfelt message that they won't forget any time soon.
“Bullying is a problem in our school. I am a victim of it”
Like Marcotte, I was bullied in grade school too. If you were, or know someone who was bullied, it can be painful to hear what Marcotte has to say.
She stepped up to the microphone at a recent school board meeting, with her father in the crowd for support, and described the vicious bullying she's seen firsthand.
"Bullying is a problem in our school," Marcotte said. "I am a victim of it."
This took courage.Posted by Todd Marcotte on Saturday, June 9, 2018
She described classmates threatening to shoot her in the head and bury her in her own backyard.
Marcotte also told reporters from NBC 10 Boston that bullies kicked her, and called her mean names.
Even though Marcotte's parents contacted her school, she says the insults didn't stop.
“I have been asked by the mother of my bully during a school field trip why I tried to get her son in trouble," she said.
“We stand by her 100 percent"
At the end of Marcotte's speech, she challenged the school board to take action against the bullies in her school.
“I ask you," she said, "what are you going to do to protect me and my classmates against bullying?"
In fact, her school board has promised to review her case, and says they encourage students to "speak up when they see, hear, or experience something that makes them uncomfortable."
In the meantime, Marcotte's mother Amy says she won't stop standing up for what's right.
"Quite frankly, she is doing something that I would have never had the guts to do, being bullied myself in high school,” she said.
“We stand by her 100 percent and will do whatever it takes to protect our child."
Spreading her message
After sharing a video of Marcotte's speech on Facebook, her father Todd says they've received plenty of encouraging comments.
Many users shared the video with the hashtag #StandWithDelanie, and urged other parents and children to help stop bullying.
"She sees her friends get bullied, other kids get bullied, she’s seen kids get bullied on the bus," Todd said about his daughter.
"She’s stood up against people and said ‘Hey, that’s not nice, say sorry.’ That’s the type of person she is."
But if you ask Delanie, she's just happy to have people around the world supporting and spreading her message.
“I stood up and I said something," she said, "and it was powerful words that I was saying."
"And it was nice to know that people are watching it now and supporting me.”
And Marcotte's message to other children in her situation is simple: I am with you.
“There’s a lot of kids out there who do get bullied. They’re not alone anymore, and they should know that.”
Let's all #StandWithDelanie to help end bullying for good!
- Parents of bullies may soon have to pay a $500 fine.
- Mom's heartbreaking post about her bullied daughter is too relatable.
- Melania Trump spoke out about bullying and people totally missed the point.