Teacher recalls bullying as warning to others who may be facing a hostile workplace

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - It was Michelle Guercio's first time teaching Pre-Kindergarten.

She thought a fellow teacher could be a role model.

"I was not as experienced in that grade level, so I listened to a lot she had to say because she knew more than I did," said Michelle.

But advice became commands.

"Why aren't you doing what we said, why aren't you doing what I said?  Why aren't you doing what I'm doing, it was very intimidating," said Michelle.

She endured it for more than five years.

"It's a quiet killer, almost. You're beat down and you don't even know it. Then you realize this person has done this to me all this time and I feel terrible," said Michelle.

To her, speaking up felt frowned upon.

"You don't say anything outside of the family. Once you do, you're out of that circle of trust," she said.

She went to the school district with a documented case.

"I had to either say 'I'm going to quit,' or 'I'm going to fight it until I am done,' " said Michelle.

Her complaints led to a five-month investigation by the school district. The school district found that her complaints were substantiated, that she was bullied by a fellow teacher.

"I felt that what I did was right. I felt like it wasn't me. It wasn't I made something up. It wasn't be being dramatic," she said.

However, she quit her job two weeks ago, the stress of being near the bully was too much. She doubts she'll ever teach again. Her biggest lesson? Speak up.

"Whether you got the outcome that you wanted, it is over and you can move on, " said Michelle.

As far as she knows, the accused bully was still teaching at the school when she quit two weeks ago.

We were not able to immediately verify that with the school district.

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