Seattle’s University Prep has been sued by a former student who claims the administration did nothing to prevent his bullying, and when he complained the school kicked him out.
The now 18 year old man, identified only as C.L., claims he was kicked out of the school after his junior year. He said other students bullied him almost from the start. “People would throw spitballs at me,” he said. “They would punch me. They would throw me into walls, throw me around in hallways and direct racial slurs and derogatory statements toward me.” C.L. is of mixed race. His mother is from Barbados. His father is from Scotland.
When his mother, A.L., went to confront the head of the school, the lawsuit claims U Prep refused to stop the bullying or hold those responsible accountable and decided it would be best if C.L. did not return to school for his Senior year.
“Shocked, appalled and devastated,” that’s how A.L. describes what she said happened to her son. “Every time I talk about it, it hurts my heart.”
C.L., his family and their attorney Yvonne Ward claim the school decided to kick him out rather than punish the children of its more prominent and wealthier families. “They are not old Seattle money,” Ward said of her clients. “Apparently at U Prep if you don’t have your last name on the side of a building in Seattle you will not be protected.”
The lawsuit is seeking more than $1 million, including the nearly $90,000 the family paid U Prep in tuition.
The school released a statement about the case. It reads, “The school vigorously denies the allegations in the complaint but due to confidentiality concerns cannot comment further at this time.”