Actor Ian Ziering is taking a stand against a young bully at his daughter’s elementary school.
“The student has shown a history of violence from kindergarten to first grade and now in second grade,” he tells TMZ during a protest involving several parents outside of West Hollywood Elementary School.
“The classroom has already been evacuated twice this year and 10 kids were beaten up and bloodied,” he continues. “No one is doing anything about it. It’s astonishing to me.”
The actor says there have been several incidents by the bully in question, including an attempted suffocation last year, which he regrets not speaking up about at the time. Now with the escalation of violence, he feels “complicit” in the attacks for allowing the bullying to continue over the years.
Ziering, 54, is the dad to two daughters, Mia, 7, and Penna, 5, who attend the school. The “Beverly Hills, 90210” alum says he does not want to remove his children from the school because that would “just be leaving the problem” of the violent student behind.
“I’m an actor but my best role to date has been ‘father’ and I can’t let this go another minute without raising attention to this problem,” he says.
Ziering released the following statement to ET Canada:
“It’s written into the California Constitution that every child has the right to a safe learning environment. My problem is not with the individual child, my heart breaks for that kid as well as for all those that have been assaulted. My problem is with LAUSD (Los Angeles Unified School District) not recognizing an escalating pattern of violent behavior and not following the protocols that they themselves have mandated to deal with it,” he says via written statement.
“Today, after meeting with the school board and the school administrators, I fully believe that by mobilizing our community, it has forced our school district to do more than placate us. They’ve assured parents that they will expedite procedures that will keep all our children safe, bring understanding and help to those that have been victimized, and get the child behind this the properly certified help he needs. What’s perhaps the saddest take away from all this is that it took a Herculean effort to get the system to do what it’s supposed to do on a daily basis, keep our children safe,” he says.