Students accuse teacher of bullying: 'Everyone started bullying me'

EUGENE, Ore. -- A student at Lincoln Middle School who accused her teacher of bullying fellow sixth-graders says that her classmates have turned against her.

Kira Appellof says students at Lincoln MS in Cottage Grove tormented her all day Thursday, following her around campus and calling her derogatory names.

Appellof told KVAL News she thinks they're just defending their teacher.

"I felt like if I wasn't the one to do that then no one else would," said Appellof.

After multiple calls with the South Lane School District since Wednesday, officials said they still can't comment on any personnel issues.

Kira and her classmate, Zaelin Bull reported that one of their teachers was bullying students in class on Wednesday. Since that time, Apellof said the bullying came full circle.

"That was the first day everyone started bullying me," Appellof said.

Kira's mom, Cirila, said her daughter came home from school Thursday afternoon sobbing.

"There were a group of girls following her around asking her if she 'had gotten what she wanted'," said Cirila Appellof.

The other student's mother, Angie Bull told KVAL News that her son Zaelin also reported that his teacher was bullying students.

"They've gone after Kira for it and I'm concerned Zae's probably gonna be the next target," Angie Bull.

Since the story aired on Thursday, KVAL News received numerous phone calls and emails from parents and students at Lincoln Middle School saying they've had good experiences with the accused teacher.

"Even today, if somebody gets the answer right he will give them a Jolly Rancher as a reward," said Emily McDonald. "I think he was trying to be sarcastic and funny like he always is."

Both mothers told KVAL News that the teacher was put on a two day administrative leave.

Since the incident, Kira and Zaelin had their class schedules changed. Their mothers say they'd like a counselor to talk to the whole class and help ease the tension.