Parents Claim Wake County School Put Their Daughter In Danger On Regular Basis
Posted December 21, 2001
WAKE COUNTY, N.C. — Some parents squared off against Wake County Thursday night over school safety. School leaders contend East Garner Middle is as safe as any other middle school in the county, but parents claim their children were put in danger on a regular basis.
Sixth-grade honor roll student Jordan Beverly, 11, has had a rough school year.
"I would either get punched, hit or scratched," she said.
"She was slapped in the head and pushed into the wall," Jordan's mother, Leigh Beverley-Davis, said.
"She's been pulled down to the floor and just beaten and stabbed with a pencil in her face," Jordan's father, Terry Davis, said.
"Some people think they pick on me because of my clothes, because of my hair, because of my shoes, because of whatever reason," Jordan said.
Two girls landed in juvenile court for assaulting Jordan at East Garner Middle School. They were also suspended. Still, her parents feared so much for her safety that they took extreme measures. One of them or Jordan's grandmother went to school with her every day.
"We would literally go to class with her, walk to class with her, be in class with her," said Leigh Beverley-Davis.
"It was unheard of when I was a child and was going to school, and it's ridiculous to have to do it now, but whatever it takes to keep my daughter safe is what's going to have to happen," Terry Davis said.
Corey Duber, senior director of security for Wake County Public Schools, stands by the safety at East Garner and the school's disciplinary policies.
"We have reduced the incidence of violence per thousand students from 8.8 to 4.2, which is a huge dramatic cut," he said.
Duber also questions Jordan's long list of accusations.
"She has made some accusations in her previous school as well as her present school, which have proven to be unfounded in the past," he said.
Standing by their daughter, the Davises enrolled Jordan in Thompson's Academy of Martial Arts so she could learn to better defend herself.
The Davises soon learned that the Thompsons had similar troubles with East Garner and pulled their 13-year-old son, Jon, out of the school.
"They could not go to the bus without being surrounded, threats made," said Jon's father Tommy Thompson.
Thompson said he was not so concerned about his son's safety since Jon is a black belt, but he did worry about his son getting into trouble for fighting back.
"I always tell my kids you should be able to leave the school with as many teeth as you walked in with. They shouldn't have to face that kind of terror in the school," said Thompson.
The Davises finally had enough and transferred Jordan out of East Garner, but that has not stopped the war of words with the Wake County school system.
"I don't think anyone's gone far enough, actually, and I think somebody's really going to get hurt at that school. It's not just my child," said Leigh Beverley-Davis.
As for their child, the Davises say they will do anything to protect her. Jordan has now transferred to the Johnston County School system.