FILE - This undated file photo provided by Cornelia Reynolds shows her son Gabriel Taye when he was in second grade. The parents of Taye, who hanged himself from his bunk bed with a neck tie want school officials held responsible, alleging that they tolerated and covered up bullying in their federal lawsuit testing the issue of school liability in such cases. The wrongful death suit filed against Cincinnati Public Schools, its officials and staff at his elementary school cites repeated examples of bullying. (Cornelia Reynolds via AP, File)
CINCINNATI (AP) —
The parents of an 8-year-old boy who killed himself after being bullied repeatedly at an Ohio school have reached a tentative $3 million settlement with his school district.
The agreement announced Friday will go to the school board for Cincinnati Public Schools on Monday for approval in the Gabriel Taye case that dates to 2017.
The schools also agreed to actions to prevent a repeat of such bullying with such steps as training and supervising all staff on anti-bullying reforms and to working to identify repeat offenders, victims and locations. There will be two years of oversight of the district’s anti-bullying plan.
A memorial to Gabriel will also be placed at Carson School, the elementary school he attended.
Parents and other demonstrators hold signs against bullying and in memory of Gabriel Taye, an 8-year-old boy who killed himself in January 2017 two days after being knocked unconscious by another Carson School student, on Friday, May 12, 2017, outside the elementary school in Cincinnati. Cincinnati Public Schools released a 24-minute surveillance video Friday that appears to show Gabriel trying to shake the hand of a boy who had hit another child, and then collapsing to the floor after being pushed into a wall at the entrance of a boys' bathroom. (AP Photo/Lisa Cornwell)
“In honor of Gabe, his family is using this settlement to protect current and future CPS students,” said the family’s lawyer, Al Gerhardstein. “We will make sure these reforms take root and end bullying throughout the CPS system.”
The Cincinnati Enquirer reported that attorney Aaron Herzig, a partner at the Taft law firm who represented the school district in the case, said a resolution was in everyone’s best interest.
“The defendants strongly believe that neither CPS, its employees, nor the school nurse were responsible for the tragic death of Gabriel Taye,” Herzig said. “CPS embraces the goal of eliminating bullying within schools, as well as continuing to refine and improve reporting, management, and training processes related to incidents of bullying.”
In this still image from a Jan. 24, 2017, surveillance video provided by Cincinnati Public Schools, the legs and feet of 8-year-old Gabriel Taye can be seen as he lies on the floor of a boys' bathroom after being knocked unconscious by another boy at Carson Elementary School. Two days later, Taye hanged himself with a necktie in the bedroom of his Cincinnati apartment. (Cincinnati Public Schools via AP)
The wrongful death lawsuit cited repeated examples of Gabriel and others being bullied at his elementary school. His parents contended that school officials knew about the bullying but were “deliberately indifferent,” allowing a “treacherous school environment.”