The bullying began for Carter Britton during the summer before seventh grade when others would make fun of him for his appearance. It continued to escalate as the year progressed and made it increasingly difficult for Carter to focus in school. The taunting worsened to the point where one of his bullies asked the class, “Who thinks Carter should die?” Now that Carter is enrolled in online learning, he no longer worries about hearing such cruel taunts in his new classroom.
When the bullying began, Carter immediately told his mother, Christie, who contacted the school to ask that those responsible for bullying her son would be punished. However, the school did not take enough action, Christie said, and she felt that the punishments were not enough and did nothing to stop the bullying Carter was experiencing. She moved him to Oklahoma Virtual Charter Academy, or OVCA, where he could continue his education in an environment where he was safe and free from the bullies who tormented him.
Now that Carter is enrolled at OVCA, Christie says that she has seen tremendous improvements in her son. “He is back to being (the) fun, loving young man … he was before all the bullying started,” she said. Meanwhile, Christie enjoys having more of a hands-on role in her son’s education.
The positive experience Carter is having with online learning is tremendous. He has gained new experiences and is able to be involved with more outside of the classroom. Taking classes online has taught him new skills, such as being responsible for his own work. With online learning, Carter can also spend more time developing his hobbies and interests. He enjoys baking and cooking meals with his family, as well as gaming and riding his dirt bike. He is also using the additional time to learn how to play the guitar and be more involved in his youth group.
For Christie, she knows that the switch to online learning was the best decision. When she asked Carter where he would be today if they had not moved to OVCA, he said that it is likely he would have attempted to end his life because of the bullying he faced. It broke Christie’s heart to hear that her son was hurting so badly. Now that he is in his new school, she knows that he has truly escaped his past and can move toward a brighter future.