Palo Alto school district faces lawsuit following series of bullying and racially charged incidents
The parents of several students at Gunn High School in Palo Alto, Calif., have filed a lawsuit against the Palo Alto Unified School District (PAUSD) following a series of bullying incidents and racially-charged altercations.
According to ABC News-7, court documents have offered details about the series of "incidents of violent and racist bullying, including the use of the N-word and some in the group being targeted beyond school grounds."
Seth Rosenberg, the attorney representing the families of plaintiffs, has shared redacted details about the court documents which highlight the timeline of incidents involving boys who are that have occured since the beginning of the school year. According to the documents, "one of the boys is Black, and others are of European or Middle Eastern descent."
The documents highlight a physical altercation that took place in a bathroom at the school. That incident resulted in one victim being taken to the emergency room after suffering from a bleeding ear. Another student visited the school nurse after being struck in the neck. However, the string of incidents didn't stop there. A locker room incident was also documented. That student was "ambushed" by "four or five" boys while preparing for gym class.
According to the documents, "Not only pummeled _____ with fists and kicks, but recorded it on video and shared it on social media far and wide."
In wake of the latest lawsuit, Gunn HS Principal Wendy Stratton has released a statement to address the situation.
"PAUSD takes reports of bullying and harassment seriously. The site has worked with the involved students and families utilizing the Uniform Complaint Procedures (UCP)," Stratton wrote. "One request for a transfer was granted, although the recipient declined unless his friends were also transferred. The aggressors were immediately disciplined consistent with protocols and protective measures are in place."
Rosenberg has offered an update on the lawsuit indicating that he and his clients are still waiting for the school district's response. "We are awaiting PAUSD response," Rosenberg said. "The school district has 45 days from November 1 to accept or reject our claims."
The students' parents have also spoken out. "This situation has been ... extremely difficult for our children and our families, and is not something we ever expected to face," they said through their attorney. "The harassment and intimidation has continued and is impacting the academics and mental health of our children."
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