Undercover Mother: Chicago mother suing Latin School for $100M says it valued reputation over saving her son

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CHICAGO – Undercover Mother describes itself as a “mom collective with children in independent schools,” including some of the nation’s most prestigious private schools. For too long these mothers have been frustrated by the ring of silence that these independent schools demand of parents and students. They have been disturbed by the governing body of these schools, the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), which has been responsible for pressing DEI and illiberal collectivist ideology into these schools. These mothers seek to protect their children by exposing the corrupt culture. Each week a new mother, anonymous or not, will tell her own story.Rose Bronstein is the mother of Nate Bronstein, a 10th grader at the Latin School of Chicago, who died by suicide on Jan. 13, 2022. She and her husband recently filed a $100 million lawsuit against the school. If they prevail, they plan to donate all proceeds to anti-bullying causes. She spoke with Fox News to detail what she called the Draconian private school culture and her belief that the school put its reputation above following the law and protected the 23 bullies rather than her son.What follows is a Q&A that has been lightly edited and condensed for clarity. We strongly encourage you to watch the accompanying video so you may hear Rose Bronstein in her own words.CAROL SWAIN: WOKENESS HAS DESTROYED AMERICAN COLLEGES, TURNED THEM INTO ‘INDOCTRINATION CENTERS’Q:Why is your son, Nate Bronstein, no longer with us? Rose Bronstein: My son passed on Jan 13, 2022. He took his own life here in our home. We found out after the fact, after that day, that he was being cyber-bullied and bullied by students in his grade at the Latin School of Chicago.
Nate Bronstein on a bike trip.
(Courtesy of the Bronstein Family)Q: What was the impact of Nate’s passing on your family?Rose Bronstein: Since Jan. 13th, our entire family is traumatized, is grieving heavily. We all suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, primarily myself, my husband and my two daughters. I have a 17-year-old daughter, a 14-year-old daughter, and we all found him that night. So that’s a trauma that stays with you all day, all night. We all fight flashbacks of that evening all the time. Nate has two sets of grandparents, lots of aunts and uncles. He has about 11 or 12 first cousins who all love and adore him. So he comes from a very large family and everyone’s been impacted by this, especially his little cousins. They miss him. They don’t understand what happened. They don’t understand why he’s not here.Within our nuclear family, each day is a struggle. Sitting down for a family dinner is really hard, because one of us is missing. We avoid going out for dinner because we’re a family of four, a reservation for four, instead of a reservation for five. So there’s a lot of avoidance. Those are our coping skills for right now. We’re all in a lot of grief and trauma counseling. But I don’t think that our family will probably ever feel whole again. There’s a hole in our hearts. There’s a hole in our home. There’s a lot of hurt all the time.Q: What was Nate like?Rose Bronstein: Nate was such a wonderful soul, such a great kid. He was such a good kid. He had a great heart. He cared about others. He was so bright, so intelligent, too bright even for his own age. He was a very loyal friend. He appreciated his friendships. He was good to others. Making friends, to him, was very easy. All he needed was his peer to say hi to him. “Hi, my name is so-and-so …” That’s all Nate needed to feel accepted or to feel that he could make a connection with someone. He loved sports. He was very into sports. He loved playing sports with his friends. He played all the sports you could imagine: tennis, basketball, golf, hockey. He was a sweet kid. He definitely was destined to do good things, great things in his lifetime.
Randall Dunn, the head of Latin School of Chicago.
Q: How did Nate end up in Latin School of Chicago?Rose Bronstein: During the pandemic, he was matriculating at Francis Parker School here in Lincoln Park. In the spring of 2021, we had decided that we were going to enroll our younger daughter at Latin to be a freshman in high school. At the time, Latin had made an announcement that in the fall of 2021 they were going back to in-person schooling and eliminating all online learning completely. And we had not received that same message from the Parker School at the time. And as parents, we were frustrated, we had enough of our kids being home. So we had asked our son, would you be okay transferring to the Latin School for 10th grade? You’ll be in school, you’ll be in the classroom. And he said, he is okay with it. He said it would be fine.MICHIGAN SCHOOL SHOOTING SUSPECT ETHAN CRUMBLEY WILL BE CALLED AS A WITNESS IN HIS PARENTS’ TRIAL, LAWYER SAYSQ: How did the students at Latin School receive Nate?Rose Bronstein: He could feel that people were judging him as a transfer student and [he was] saying, “The kids think I’m weird. They think something’s wrong with me. They think I was a bad kid at Parker, which is why I came to Latin.” We do know also that there were rumors being spread about his vaccination status. He did report to me that on two separate occasions, two students approached him, students that he did not know, and asked him about his vaccination status and asked him if we were anti-vaxxers. So it just seemed like the students there were targeting him, were trying to find ways to ostracize him and not give him the opportunity to integrate.Q: Were there efforts to help him and make him feel included?Rose Bronstein: Throughout September and the month of October, pretty much almost every day in some way, shape or form, I had reached out to someone at the school asking for help, asking for advice, asking for support, to try to help Nate integrate better into the school’s culture. …The school [was] not reminding these kids, especially after having been at home for a year and a half and not having social interactions—they’re not being reminded to be kind inclusive, thoughtful, welcoming to anyone and everyone. And so at the time, I just kept saying to Nate: “You just got to keep trying, you got to keep trying. It’ll come.” We had discussed that he was going to join the JV basketball team. And I said, “I bet you, as soon as you join that team, you’re going to make friends.” 
Nate Bronstein died by suicide at age 15 after being bullied at the Latin School of Chicago.
(Courtesy of Bronstein Family)Q: While Nate faced day-to-day bullying throughout the fall of 2021, was there an incident that pushed everything over the edge?Rose Bronstein: On Friday, Dec. 10, there was a basketball game between Parker [Nate’s former school] and Latin. And they have a history of very hostile competitiveness among the two schools, almost to a point where it needs to be diffused. …My son was on the JV basketball team for Latin. He was in a boot, so he didn’t even play that night because he was injured. When the game started, Parker was ahead by 20 points, which is unusual because usually Latin tends to win games over Parker. From what we know, our son had posted a “W,” implying win, on an Instagram page, implying that Parker was winning the basketball game. That’s all he did. He posted a “W.”That post then created backlash against him from over 20 students at Latin. They decided to go after him for posting that. The students include 20 students from the JV basketball team, a varsity basketball player. And then other students, in addition to that, jumped on the bandwagon and decided to screenshot these messages and circulate them through. On Dec. 10, he got a Snapchat, and he was attacked over a JV basketball thread with 20 students. And it went from about 9:30 at night to about 12:30 at night — it did not stop. On Sunday, Dec. 12, my son reached out to the dean of students at Latin school. He sent an email and requested a meeting with her to report the cyberbullying that went on. We know that he met with her in person on Monday, Dec. 13. We know that he showed her the Snapchat message and reported it, and he had asked her to tell the students to stop because it was circulating. It had been screenshotted and recirculated and recirculated. I do know now in the present, months later, that for two weeks after that, that Snapchat message and the text messages, not only circulated throughout the Latin School and the Parker School, but throughout other high schools within the city of Chicago. FORMER EDUCATION SEC. BETSY DEVOS CALLS BIDEN ADMIN’S NEW PARENTS COUNCIL A ‘LAUGHABLE’ EFFORTOn Dec. 13, when my son went in to report the cyberbullying, Illinois law requires that the dean of students, number one, began an investigation, an immediate investigation. Number two, by law, she was required to contact me and my husband to let us know that our son had reported a cyberbullying incident. By law, she was required to contact the parents of the student who had bullied him as well and bring everyone in and begin an investigation. We believe, by law, if she’s the dean of students, then she had to notify the upper school head, and the upper school head in the chain of command had to notify Randall Dunn [the head of school], especially when a cyberbullying incident has been reported. None of those things were done. From what we’ve been told, she chose not to report it because she said that our son asked her not to tell us about it. He was a minor, he was 15 years old. So she broke the law. 
The Latin School of Chicago’s webpage says the institution fosters “a sense of belonging.”
(www.latinschool.org)Q: Were there other students at Latin who witnessed how Nate was being treated?Rose Bronstein: On Jan. 18, which is a Tuesday, a mother and a child from the Latin school asked for a meeting with Randall Dunn, Bridget Hennessy, who’s the dean of students to whom my son reported the incident to, Dean [Joe] Edwards, who’s also the other dean of the high school, and Kristine Von Ogden, who is the upper school principal. [The mother and child] met in person with the four of them and provided the four of them with a copy of the Snapchat, a copy of the text thread and a letter from the student who gave testimony about how Nate was treated in school and how he was berated and bullied by the geometry teacher, who’s also named in the lawsuit, Mr. Andrew Sanchez. And the boy knew that because the boy was in the class—he saw with his own eyes. Those four administrators had told the mother and the son that they would follow up with her and let her know what would next steps be. They never followed up with her. Q: You and your husband were in the dark about what happened on Dec. 10. When did you find out the whole truth?Rose Bronstein: Jan. 27. I start to hear rumblings among parents in the community from their sons, sons who were friends with my son, who are starting to share little tidbits with their parents about this. And that’s when, that afternoon, I had received a copy of the Snapchat, a copy of the text thread and the letter [from the student witness]. And, outside of the day of Jan. 13, losing my son, that day was just as much of a punch to my soul, I felt like my soul was reshattered again into thousands of pieces — having seen how he was targeted, hazed, insulted, attacked through social media. And it was hidden from us by the school. We also know that he received a Snapchat message from a student in the school, and the message said to go kill himself. So on Jan. 27, when we found out early that afternoon, my husband and I called the school. I had actually sent an email to Randall Dunn, who’s the head of the school, and I had marked it “urgent,” saying to him that I had just been informed that my son was being cyberbullied at the Latin School and I was just starting to collect information about it. And I had even included some of the names of the kids … And I had said, “Please call me ASAP. This is urgent.” And the irony is he already knew about it. So I thought I was giving him new information that we had just found out about, but he had already known about it.He did not answer my email, and as you can imagine in our home, my husband was panicking, I was panicking. We were so upset. We felt so blindsided again. So we picked up the phone and called the school. They would not bring Mr. Dunn to the phone. We asked for the second in command, Kristine Von Ogden, who’s the head of the upper school, [and] asked to speak with her. SCHOOL DISTRICTS PRICING OUT PARENTS ON RECORD REQUESTS BY CHARGING TENS OF THOUSANDS IN ‘EXORBITANT FEES’She got on the phone, and she actually had the nerve to push back on us. We said, “We just found out all this information that our son was cyberbullied. We need to come in and talk to you about this right away. We need to understand what happened.” And she actually tried to push us off and tell us that they were not available that afternoon to speak to us, that she would get back to us to try to schedule a meeting with us the very next day.That infuriated me even more. And I said, “This is not acceptable. We are talking about the loss of my child, and you are telling us we have to wait.” And I said, “Absolutely not. We said we are coming right now.” 
Nate Bronstein stands on a surfboard and gives a thumbs up.
(Courtesty of Bronstein Family)Q: How did Randall Dunn receive you and your husband? Rose Bronstein: Rob, my husband, and I had gone over to the school to meet with Randall Dunn and Shelley Greenwood [assistant head of school), to get an understanding of what had happened with the cyberbullying. Rob had asked Randall Dunn, “Why didn’t you tell us?” And he gave us two answers. First, he said that he thought we already knew. And second, he said that he didn’t want to upset us more. Those answers in itself were also very jarring, very upsetting. We found them to be very disrespectful, not only to us, but to our son and our family. I had asked questions such as why had Bridget Hennessy not filed a police report? Why had we not been notified when our son had reported this incident? Had the parents of these kids been called in? Had the kids been called in? And we did not get a single answer. Just blank stares, just absolute silence.Q: Have any of the 23 students who bullied Nate reached out to your family?Rose Bronstein: Not a single family – 23 kids were involved in this – and not a single family has had the integrity and the character to bring their children and themselves in front of us to apologize. And this was even before we filed a lawsuit. They had over two months of time to say to themselves, “We need to bring our sons to the Bronsteins and show them that they feel bad for what they did and they understand that what they did was wrong and to hold themselves accountable.” None of that. Not a single person involved in this has done that. As a mother who now has to live the rest of her life without a child, I don’t even have the words to explain how much it hurts to live in my skin every single day, to know that these people have shown no remorse, no sense of accountability, nothing. Nothing at all.Q: Why are you filing the lawsuit against the Latin School?Rose Bronstein: We are filing a lawsuit because we think it’s critical to shine a light on the failings of the Latin School and to shine a light on how critical it is to take seriously when a student comes to an administrator and reports a bullying incident. It cannot be brushed under the rug, and it cannot be shrugged off. And this is one of Latin’s biggest failings: They failed to follow the law. They failed to protect our son, and they chose to try to cover this up. And if we don’t shine a light on this and bring this to the attention of the public and of the Latin community and other communities of independent schools, this will happen again.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPQ: What do you hope will be the lasting legacy of your son, Nate Bronstein?Rose Bronstein: I can’t even answer that. It hurts so much. A life that was cut short for no reason, other than just people not doing their job. We sent him to that school under the premise that he was going to be protected and safe there. And, if at minimum, we can raise awareness of this, not only to parents and schools, but to the teenage population as well, who spends all of their time communicating on social media, and [help them] start to understand that there needs to be consequences for despicable behavior towards each other on social media, then I guess that’ll be his legacy. I want his legacy to somehow be turned into something positive that will affect change in the future. And that will make people more cognizant that this is a huge problem in society—suicide as an epidemic, and a lot of suicides are a result of bullying.I think parents, schools and kids all need to take a step back, and we need to shift into a different direction to protect our kids, to encourage parents to not be so hands-off in raising their kids in a world where they’re completely surrounded by social media. They can’t just hand their kid a phone and access to social media and say to them, go ahead, do whatever you want. And [we also need to] put in place stronger legislation across the country to hold schools accountable and parents liable if their children are bullying and cyberbullying their peers to the point that it leads to death.The Latin School of Chicago declined to provide its version of events.For more information on Undercover Mothers and its efforts to expose the corrupt culture in private schools, please visit its website.”

Mojtaba Sadira

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