Bullying | New York | News

Internet Raises More Than $30K for Bullied NY Bus Monitor: VIDEO


This morning I posted about Karen Huff Klein, a Rochester, NY school bus monitor taunted and bullied by a gang of teens in a horrific video.

The video has gone viral and after a "call to arms" on Reddit and a fundraising effort to send Huff on a vacation, internet donations have reached more than $30,000. There is also a "kindness for Karen" Facebook page.

The Rochester Democrat and Chronicle interviewed Karen about the incident.

Klein said she didn’t report Monday’s incident to her supervisor because the school year was nearly over. She also said she did not feel threatened and that the kids “weren’t always that bad.”

Klein also said she is hearing impaired and didn’t hear all of the taunting until she watched the video.

“I was trying to just ignore them, hoping they would go away and it doesn’t work,” Klein said. “Trust me, they didn’t go away.”

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Bravo for her. Now, um, where can I get assigned to a really mean school bus? I'm remodeling my condo, and $30K will just about cover it. I will accept taunts for being short, gay, Jewish, and ultra-liberal. Thanks.

    Posted by: Zlick | Jun 20, 2012 6:28:02 PM

  2. I am so beyond upset. That is one of the most appauling things i have ever seen. I can't even describe how this video makes me feel.

    Posted by: justin | Jun 20, 2012 6:52:35 PM

  3. Will any action be taken against the kids who taunted her? If not, why not? I would like to think the parents of those kids are embarrassed and disappointed that their own children could be so cruel and sick.

    Posted by: OS2Guy | Jun 20, 2012 6:53:17 PM

  4. Please Karen do something to have these kids punished..Other wise they see that they can get away with bullying and will continue to do it... Save another person from this...

    Posted by: Mark | Jun 20, 2012 6:58:44 PM

  5. As a proud Rochesterian I must stress, Greece NY is a suburb of Rochester and in no way shares any of our values. They are a homogeneous cabal of Rethug guidos who consistently behave in racist, sexist and homophobic behaviors AND their kids are sad reflections of their evangelical leanings.

    Posted by: Tadpolicus Wex | Jun 20, 2012 6:59:20 PM

  6. As horrific as the whole incident has been, she displays strength of character. Kudos to her. I hope she gets the chance to prove that bullying isn't just hurting the youth.

    Posted by: Lonewolfen | Jun 20, 2012 7:04:00 PM

  7. @Tadpolicus Wex . . . we all like to think that people behave like this everywhere but our own town, but just for using the term "guido" and slapping that title on the entire township of Greece, will have to reexamine the behavior or at least one proud Rochesterian.

    You see this is what the people in Laramie wanted to think . . . that Aaron McKinney and Russel Henderson were not one of their own.

    What proud Rochesterians, Olympians (that is my home town), AMERICAN's need to realize is that this is the face of America. This is the face of America, and as long as we think murders, rapes, or bullying happens anywhere but in our home state, in our home town . . . then this is all we will ever be.

    Posted by: Ricco | Jun 20, 2012 7:12:30 PM

  8. @Lonewolfen

    This is from one of the news stories:

    "The district’s bullying response and prevention team was also notified, Heiden said. The students’ behavior violated the district’s Code of Conduct 'and will not be tolerated,' district officials said."


    "Greece police and school officials have questioned some students believed to have taunted and harassed a Greece Central School District bus monitor."


    Posted by: Eric | Jun 20, 2012 7:13:18 PM

  9. What about Reddit?!! That is the best part of this! Bravo Redfit for being the anti YouTube comments section. Reddit is the Internet done right! All in the name of making someone's day brighter! Unreal! Proud to be a redditor right now.

    Posted by: AJ | Jun 20, 2012 7:19:00 PM

  10. What exactly is the job of a school bus monitor?

    I think the behavior of the children is awful, and I feel terrible for her. However, it was her job to prevent this kind of behavior on the school bus in the first place.

    It seems to me that she was put into a job she shouldn't have been performing in the first place.

    Would her reaction to a child being bullied in such a way been to "...ignore them, hoping they would go away..."?

    It seems to me that one way in which this lady was abused was by her supervisors throwing her to the wolves without proper training. She is an adult on a bus with middle school kids, they are going to test her every way imaginable. It shocks me that the situation could get that out of control.

    I hope that enough money is raised so that she can enjoy a retirement. This is no way to go through life.

    Posted by: Kevin | Jun 20, 2012 7:30:07 PM

  11. Thanks Kevin for saying exactly what I was thinking.

    Posted by: Craig | Jun 20, 2012 7:34:52 PM

  12. @Kevin

    From the interviews I've seen with her, her job was to keep the kids in their seats and stop them from yelling. I don't know how long she's been a school bus monitor, but she's been working for the school district for over 20 years. She even graduated from their high school 50 years ago. Also from the interviews she says that she's been with these kids all year, and even that day they were all in their seats and were orderly, then they just turned on her, including threatening to hurt her, and saying that her kids should kill themselves (her son did commit suicide years earlier, and she is widowed). And here, I think, is the key: she said in one interview that it doesn't do any good to write the kids up, because nothing happens. She says that she didn't even bother to write the kids up this time, because there was only a few days left in the school year, and, well, her reports were ignored before. I hear what you're saying, but, put yourself in her position. What would you have done?

    Posted by: Eric | Jun 20, 2012 7:54:34 PM

  13. For those of us who work for companies with strong policies and enforcement against harassment, we are fortunate. The next time I have a struggle at work, I am going to think of this video.

    Posted by: Angela Channing | Jun 20, 2012 8:02:50 PM

  14. @Eric.

    Thank you for the clarifications.

    I want to be clear, I am not blaming the victim here. What I am asking, is where is the discipline, boundaries and consistency that prevents this kind of behavior.

    In most school districts the job of the bus monitor is to make sure there is discipline as well as general safety on the bus. To be honest, I can't answer the question as to what I would have done. It is obvious, from this video, that there was a complete breakdown in boundaries and discipline that was far greater than one day. Its not just smacking the kids, its a consistent policy that is consistently enforced that needs to happen. My honest impression is that bullying on the bus is the norm and the kids believed this kind of behavior was acceptable.

    I think it is important to provide a bit of counterbalance to the posts and comments (on this and other sites) that seem to imply that these children are evil in ways that children have never been evil before. Obviously some of us don't recall being thirteen. There were people posting the home addresses of the children involved here. Is that acceptable behavior coming from adults?

    I wonder if this behavior occurs on every school bus everywhere, everyday? The stories from people who recall bullying as children on school buses would indicate that it does - if you're a kid. In this instance, the target was an adult. That tells me the system is broken (in several ways).

    Sorry, but at some point the adults bear responsibility here. That includes the staff on the bus, the parents as well as the school administrators.

    Posted by: Kevin | Jun 20, 2012 8:16:10 PM

  15. I'm sure all the kids were from nice families...you know, good families - with one father, and one mother; which always ensures that the kids grow up just right.

    Posted by: STeve | Jun 20, 2012 9:27:29 PM

  16. Regarding the question why the bus monitor was not well trained, the answer is the school district will outsource the position to a foreign country if they are allowed to. They simply doesn't have the money.

    Posted by: simon | Jun 20, 2012 9:53:12 PM

  17. Probably not legal to publish the names of the children involved, but the parents... Let the world know who raised such little darlings.

    Posted by: Bri | Jun 20, 2012 11:10:03 PM

  18. Wow, the fundraising campaign is up to 130,000 dollars as of 10pm PST! I'm imagining the vacation will turn into a retirement fund..

    Posted by: Timothy | Jun 21, 2012 1:22:25 AM

  19. "Because our kids aren't bad". Some of them are disrespectful mutants. I wonder what the grandmothers of these grossly disrespectful children think.

    Posted by: andrew | Jun 21, 2012 2:02:54 AM

  20. Oh I'd have loved to have been on that bus. I'd have lost my job. But those kids would never have bullied anyone again.

    Posted by: Tom Stoppard | Jun 21, 2012 3:56:52 AM

  21. What proud Rochesterians, Olympians (that is my home town), AMERICAN's need to realize is that this is the face of America. This is the face of America, and as long as we think murders, rapes, or bullying happens anywhere but in our home state, in our home town . . . then this is all we will ever be.

    Posted by: Ricco | Jun 20, 2012 7:12:30 PM

    You are a very eloquent man, nevertheless, look me me up if you are in my neck of the woods - we can take an excursion to the local mall and I'll treat you to a pretzel then you can walk it back after watching the locals of Greece, NY. I totally agree that bullying is legion, no region is free of it's insidious menace HOWEVS Greece has a concentration of such odious, cruel folks that I must defend my own hometown, mind you we're the second highest murder rate in our state and yet city folk are a lot less likely to verbally abuse their bus monitor for simple sadistic pleasure, fact.

    Posted by: Tadpolicus Wex | Jun 21, 2012 5:55:02 AM

  22. Local 'Guidos'? Good grief.

    I agree 100% with Kevin. Nice lady, feel bad for her and what happened, hope she gets something out of it and can retire or move onto a job she can handle. And it's obvious she wasn't a competent bus monitor, being too old and deaf or nearly deaf. I'm sure the folks who put her this job thought they were doing the right thing by giving this nice lady a job that she obviously needs, but she's just not fit for it, again it's obvious. Maybe she can collect disability for her deafness or something, in addition to S.S. and what-not.

    The effing brats need more than a good talking to, that's for sure. I hope their names get published on the net so they have a hard time in the future living this down, like when employers and schools might happen to do a search on them. That's the least that should happen out of this. That was painful to watch.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Jun 21, 2012 2:19:14 PM

  23. Over $250 K now

    Posted by: Astro Boy | Jun 21, 2012 2:28:58 PM

  24. She should have told the driver to pull over, call the school, and say the brats are being driven back to the school. Let the parents be inconvenienced by picking up their idiots instead of letting the taxpayers give them a ride home.

    The poor lady was clearly out of her league, she didn't want to "rock the boat" and cause trouble. She may have feared losing her job if she disciplined them.

    As for calling a 67-year-old grandmother "ugly and fat", I wonder what type of Miss America contestants those morons have for grandmothers?

    Just the gutter language alone should have been grounds to terminate their ride. The second that brat put his hand on her shoulder, she should have had him arrested for assault!

    Posted by: Grace in San Francisco | Jun 21, 2012 2:40:13 PM

  25. With all the money being sent to this poor woman. I hope she uses it to retire comfortably so that she doesn't have to sit on the bus with a bunch of preteen shitstains ever again.

    I seriously hope that the next time those asswipes pull that crap again, that their new bus monitor grabs the wheel, runs it off the nearest cliff and jumps to safety just in time.

    Posted by: FuryOfFirestorm | Jun 21, 2012 2:59:16 PM

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