Highlands School District parents say daughter is being bullied because of her race

ALLEGHENY COUNTY, Pa. — Parents of a Highlands School District student told Channel 11 their daughter is being bullied because of her race, and the district is ignoring their concerns.

“It’s disheartening that it’s 2021, and you’re still getting called the n-word. And, it’s by people who are 13 or 14 years old,” said Damien Shavers, parent.

Damien and Princess Shavers tell Channel 11, they are frustrated with the leadership at their daughter’s school.

According to the Shavers’, she was suspended for slapping a student who called her the n-word.

And, the parents tell Channel 11, no repercussions were made against the child who said it.

“We’ve had to tell our children to try not to respond in a violent manner, but also defend yourself because it’s not right and the people who keep doing it, think it is ok,” said Princess Shavers, parent.

“It hurts too because your daughter is looking at you like, ‘What am I doing wrong?’ It’s like absolutely nothing,” said Damien Shavers.

The couple tells Channel 11, racism and bullying are tolerated by officials with the Highlands School District.

The Shavers say this isn’t the first time something like this has happened, and each time they have had a meeting with school officials, nothing is done.

“After this happened, for so many times, and our children get backed into a corner, and they have to defend themselves. What we they supposed to do when the adults around them are choosing not to do anything,” said Shavers.

“I think everyone needs to be treated the same. I think there should be more transparency in our district,” said Shavers.

Channel 11 reached out to officials with Highlands Middle School and the district’s superintendent’s office twice, as of Monday night, we have not received a response.

The family tells Channel 11, if something is not done immediately, they will be forced to move out of their community for the safety of their children.