After Boy Is Bullied for His ‘Trump’ Name, Here’s What Happened

Kid faced endless teasing — now he's doing this

Image Credit: iStock

For two years, kids bullied young Joshua Trump of Delaware so relentlessly at school that soon the 11-year-old will be going by a different last name.

“They curse at him, they call him an idiot, they call him stupid,” said his mother, Megan Trump Berto, according to ABC7 in Los Angeles, California.

“He was getting ridiculed and bullied for the fact that his last name was Trump,” added his father, Bobby Berto.

MORE NEWS: Why the riots?

The bullying apparently got so bad for Joshua — whose mother’s maiden name is Trump — that his parents pulled him out of grade school for a year, opting to homeschool him instead.

They hoped things would change for the better in middle school.

When do you think the country should re-open and get back to work?

By completing the poll, you agree to receive emails from LifeZette and that you've read and agree to our privacy policy and legal statement.

Teachers at Talley Middle School in Wilmington, Delaware, were made aware of the issues the boy faced in elementary school and tried their best to not use his last name when speaking with him, said Talley Middle School Principal Mark Mayer, according to WPVI.

MORE NEWS: How should Christians handle the murder of George Floyd and where do we go from here?

Yet the bullying continued.

It’s now affecting how Joshua feels about himself, said his parents, noted Newsweek.

“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,” his mother told WPVI, the ABC affiliate in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

In the meantime, Joshua’s parents have met with the school multiple times about various bullying-related incidents, Brandywine School District public information officer Alexis Andrianopoulos told Newsweek.

The first meeting took place last week, but it was about incidents unrelated to Joshua’s last name.

The school has since accommodated the family’s request to switch Joshua’s bus. That’s where the bullying related to his name took place.

Talley, a public school, has also agreed to change Joshua’s last name from Trump (his mother’s maiden name) to Berto (his father’s last name) in the school’s system.

Five students at the middle school have also been also disciplined, according to WPVI.

It’s also working on a plan to provide him with extra support.

Five students at the middle school have also been also disciplined, according to WPVI.

Bullying is classified as a Level III offense, according to the Brandywine School District student code of conduct.

The section on bullying reads, in part, as follows: “Bullying is any intentional written, electronic, verbal, or physical act or actions against a student school volunteer, or school employee that a reasonable person, under the circumstances should know will have the effect of: 1.) Placing a student, school volunteer, or school employee in reasonable fear of substantial harm to his or her emotional or physical well-being or substantial damage to his or her property; 2.) Creating a hostile, threatening, humiliating, or abusive educational environment due to the pervasiveness or persistence of actions or due to a power differential between the bully and the target …”

Researchers, meanwhile, have a very specific definition of bullying, according to Psychology Today.

“Bullying involves deliberate, aggressive acts targeting a particular individual repeatedly, over time (although some researchers also count a single severe aggressive act), and it involves a power difference between the bully and the target. In other words the bully is bigger, stronger, tougher, or more socially powerful than the person being bullied, which makes it difficult or impossible for targets of bullying to defend or protect themselves.”

At the school district in question, “this year has been focused on relationship building and understanding each student’s story,” Andrianopoulos told Newsweek.

“Students meet in groups with school counselors every other week to receive valuable lessons on team building, relationships, social and emotional learning, and building connections with each other,” she added.

Elizabeth Economou is a former CNBC staff writer and adjunct professor. Follow her on Twitter.

Join the Discussion

COMMENTS POLICY: We have no tolerance for messages of violence, racism, vulgarity, obscenity or other such discourteous behavior. Thank you for contributing to a respectful and useful online dialogue.