Isabella Tichenor, a 10-year-old diagnosed with autism, tragically took her own life this past weekend. According to the Standard-Examiner, the Utah girl’s grieving mother has since spoken out about alleged bullying that her daughter endured before the suicide, as well as what she considers to be a lack of response from Isabella’s school district.
Expressing her frustration towards the Davis School District, located near Salt Lake City, Brittany Tichenor claims to have spoken with school officials and teachers more than once about the bullying Isabella sustained at her elementary school, the Standard-Examiner reported.
The Utah mother reportedly revealed, “Nobody has done anything. This proves (school personnel) don’t know what a child is going through mentally, and a parent has to find their child hanging from a closet.” According to the news outlet, the mother also mentioned that her daughter “lived life a little different than other kids” and alleged that a teacher also joined the schoolchildren in “mocking” Isabella.
“Even though my baby is gone, I’m going to make sure I stand for Izzy. I will never get to see her again … I will never … She was ten years old. She was only 10.” she reportedly said through tears during a news conference this past week.
Isabella’s 7-year-old sister, who attended the same school, was allegedly called a racial slur earlier in the school year. But according to the Standard-Examiner, Brittany claims that she “had to break it down to the vice principal,” adding, “I shouldn’t have to tell you why that’s bad.”
According to the Standard-Examiner, Davis School District spokesperson Shauna Lund commented on the alleged bullying incidents and suicide in a prepared statement, writing, “We, like everyone, are devastated by the death of this child. Our hearts go out to the family. Foxboro Elementary has worked extensively with the family and will continue to provide help to them and others impacted by this tragedy.”
Adding that the Utah school district takes “all incidents and reports of bullying seriously,” the statement continued, “At this point, the incident we are aware of involved another student. The teacher and administration responded quickly and appropriately. As with all allegations of bullying, our investigation will continue.”
A GoFundMe was set up on Sunday to help Isabella’s family cover funeral costs. The fundraiser has currently reached over $68,000, with a goal of $100,000.