DAVIS COUNTY, Utah — A North Salt Lake family is speaking out about a Davis School District elementary school, saying one of their children dealt with racism and bullying at the same school attended by Izzy Tichenor.
Tichenor died by suicide earlier this month after her mother said the 10-year-old endured bullying from other students at Foxboro Elementary School.
Qiana Turner said her two sons, Nathaniel and Liam Warren, went to Foxboro Elementary a few years ago up until 2020.
Nathaniel is 12 now, but remembers what he said he often dealt with starting in Kindergarten and 1st grade.
He described feeling targeted by other students, and talked about experiencing racist name-calling as well as physical violence.
Turner said her son was called the "n-word" as well as "oreo," and she said she had to explain to Nathaniel what that all meant.
"He had never heard that word, because we don't speak that word," she said of the n-word. "So when he told me that this was being said to him, I couldn't believe it."
One day, Turner said that her son was attacked by six students on the playground at recess.
Nathaniel said a kid jumped on top of him, and others followed suit.
"Two kids were holding my arms, and another one was holding my stomach," he remembered. "One was just punching, like just punching. It was like holding my waist, and another one was just punching me in the stomach."
Nathaniel was so badly injured that Turner said she took him to the emergency room, where X-rays revealed bruised ribs.
"I took the X-rays to the school district. I told them all the incidents that had happened," she recounted. "I told them as many times as I had been to the school, talked to the principal, all the meetings."
Turner said the principal told her he spoke with the other parents involved, and her son didn't go to school for a week.
But Turner felt the district and school did not resolve the issue, and she said the bullying continued after Nathaniel returned.
"They didn't beef up the security like they said, they didn't do any of that. He was actually bribed with candy to keep his mouth shut," she said.
Nathaniel's glasses were broken on a few occasions, Turner said. She said the school paid to replace the glasses at one point.
"What do I do as a parent?" she wondered. "I've tried everything I can do to try to stop him from being bullied, to try to have him enjoy school again, but nothing's working."
Eventually, Turner said she pulled both of her sons out of Foxboro, and they are now enrolled in school online. After hearing about the death of Izzy at the same school her boys attended, Turner said her heart dropped.
"I felt like, how can this have happened — again — to another kid? And how can Foxboro have let it happen?" she questioned.
She's now urging parents to talk to their children about bullying, and check in with them to make sure they aren't being bullied.
Turner is also hoping that something changes, so that no other child goes through the same thing.
"No child, and no Black child, no child at all should have to deal with that," she said. "They shouldn't. No child should be thinking about suicide, anything. They should be living their little lives, doing their school work, having fun. Being kids, like kids should be."
FOX 13 reached out to the Davis School District about Nathaniel and Liam, and the school district said federal law protects student and education records, and prohibits the district from talking about student matters.