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Dear Plano ISD Shares the Anonymous Stories of Students Who Experienced Abuse & Bullying in School



PLANO, TX – The personal testimonies posted anonymously on the Dear Plano ISD Facebook page are all different. They come from different schools, and students from many different years. But they follow common threads, and together, they tell a singular story.

“I looked at my teacher who witnessed the whole thing but when I did look at her, she looked back down at her work like it never happened,” one reads.

“School instantly became a source of fear for me,” another student writes. “Since then, I pretty much have worn baggy clothes to class every day.”

“He would threaten that if I mentioned anything to anyone, he would hurt me,” another says.

Each note is signed the same way: “Sincerely, a student,” followed by the school they attended.

Dear Plano ISD is a Facebook page run by five recent graduates of Plano schools. The page shares stories of abuse, harassment, and bullying in PISD schools.

“People are shocked by what happened to them,” one of the page administrators, a young woman, explained on the phone. “They don’t always know how to react and are sometimes scared to stand up for themselves. Then they feel if they say something, they’ll be hit with, ‘It’s just a joke,’ or “Boys will be boys.’”

The group’s founders prefer to remain anonymous, to better represent the entirety of the PISD alumnae community. The member I spoke to asked to be referred to simply as an administrator.

“I personally had a reputation as a social justice warrior if that’s what you want to call it,” she said. “I’m a person of color, I saw things happening around me. What sucked was when I tried to stand up as me, not anonymously, I was ignored. I got painted a little crazy, so [my complaints] were dismissed when it came out of my mouth.”

That experience motivated Dear Plano ISD’s commitment to remaining anonymous. “We don’t want our identities to overshadow the integrity of the page,” the admin said.

She recalls that middle school was particularly vicious. “You’d have one guy who harassed multiple girls, and got away with it,” she explained. “It’s terrible to think about. They’re going to nice colleges, they have all these scholarships, and the people they hurt were left behind.”

She, personally, had a fairly positive experience. “I was conscious about how people treated me, I would call them out. I guarded myself,” she says. But not everyone knows how to protect themselves. Furthermore, students shouldn’t have to. School should be a safe place.

How Dear Plano ISD Started

“I wasn’t the one who started Dear Plano ISD,” the admin said. She came on a day later.

As written in their first post, “If we want to see change for the next generation of Plano ISD students, we cannot ignore the behavior that we know is wrong.” Within its first day, the page blew up, and the group of five students solidified. The page, the admin said, was the best thing to come out of her year.

Dear Plano ISD runs simply. Any past or current PISD student can submit stories of their experiences. The admin says that it’s a job to scrub through it, and weed out joke submissions. “We get song lyrics, fanfiction—so much ‘Vampire Diaries’ fanfiction,” she adds incredulously. “Someone really enjoys doing that.”

They also have a list of demands for PISD, including implementing more comprehensive education on subjects like harassment and sexual assault, and to start that education at a younger age. Additionally, they want the district to allocate time to self-defense classes for all students. “Our mission is really just to bring awareness to the problems, and we want to work with the district to see what they can do.”