WILMINGTON, Del. – A student at a Delaware school will be going by a different name in class after relentless bullying.
The situation had the parents reaching out to Action News for help, saying their son’s bullying wasn’t being addressed by the Brandywine School District.
The problem: They say 11-year-old Joshua Trump was being picked on because of his last name.
“They curse at him, they call him an idiot, they call him stupid,” said his mother, Megan Trump.
“He was getting ridiculed and bullied for the fact that his last name was Trump,” said his father, Bobby Berto.
His parents say the bullying started for Joshua – who is not related to the 45th president – when Donald Trump began running for office.
“I pulled him out of school and homeschooled him for a year,” his father said.
This year, Joshua was moving into middle school, so his parents thought things would change.
They even said they met with school officials and teachers to tell them about Joshua’s past problems.
It’s a fact that the Principal of Talley Middle School, Mark Mayer, acknowledges.
“I do know the teachers were aware of the last name, and I know in speaking with the student that the teachers do their very best to try not to say his last name,” Mayer said.
Joshua’s parents say the bullying didn’t stop.
“He said he hates himself, and he hates his last name, and he feels sad all the time, and he doesn’t want to live feeling like that anymore, and as a parent that’s scary,” said Megan.
Mayer says after a recent meeting with Joshua’s parents, there was an investigation. He says five students were identified and disciplined.
“They were apologetic and they did say that they were sorry,” Mayer said.
The principal and Joshua’s family met again on Tuesday morning.
The school has agreed to immediately change Joshua’s last name to his father’s name in their system.
They are also working on providing him extra support so he feels comfortable reporting any future incidents.