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Mayor Wu Says 'Strong Plan' In Place For Mission Hill School Students And Teachers After Shutdown

JAMAICA PLAIN (CBS) -- About 200 students who go to Mission Hill K-8 School in Jamaica Plain now have to find a new school for the fall. On Thursday night, the Boston School Committee voted to shutter the school following an investigation by a law firm that found instances of bullying and sexual misconduct among students had been going on for years and was largely unreported by school leaders.

Boston Mayor Michelle Wu says she thinks it's best for the building to close.

"I know this is a really difficult time for so many of our families. We have a strong plan in place, so that we will make sure every single student is placed in a school they are comfortable and happy with, and that our educators are wrapped around as well," Mayor Wu said.

Some parents that spoke to WBZ-TV are upset, saying it's a big life change on very short notice.

The doors of the school will close for good next month. And parents say now they are left scrambling to make other plans.

"If they had told people earlier, given us info, people could have made plans. Now people can't even look at private schools if that's an option for you. It's too late. Everything is closed," one parent said.

Five families have settled a lawsuit with the district, and some of those victims are as young as five years old.

"The investigators found that students are still at an increased risk of bullying as a result of the pervasive school culture that has been built and allowed to continue for more than a decade," said Superintendent Brenda Cassellius.

But some parents say this decision is upending their lives. One mom, who didn't want to be identified, walks her child to school every day. Now that's going to change.

"It seems like there were a few key players, so why Boston Public [Schools] has to punish the whole community instead of dealing accordingly with people in the school, I don't understand that," the mother said.

Superintendent Cassellius says the investigation is far from over and the next phase will examine the roles of both schools and district officials.

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