Students beat and bullied me for being white By Selim Algar April 12, 2016 | 12:44am A white student at a predominately Hispanic and black Long Island high school says he was targeted for punishment over his race — punched, hit with a chair and repeatedly called “cracker” and “white boy” — while administrators did nothing to protect him. Lawyers for Giovanni Micheli, now 23, aim to convince a federal jury their client was singled out as a “minority” in Brentwood HS and then told by school officials, most of them white, to either “project more self-confidence” in order to stem the beating and berating — or leave. Micheli sued the Brentwood School District in 2010, and the trial opened Monday in Brooklyn federal court. “Giovanni was a minority because he was Caucasian,” attorney Wayne Schaefer said in his opening statement. “This case is about discrimination against a minority student . . . Our claim is that there was deliberate indifference because he was a Caucasian student complaining in a district where Caucasians are a minority.” After his parents complained, administrators eventually removed Micheli from the campus in favor of home tutoring, according to Schaefer. Officials later turned down the family’s request to have the increasingly depressed and withdrawn student moved to another district. But Schaefer said the parents were told, “If we do that for him, we would have to do that for all the white children.” An attorney for the school district said Micheli was never able to give school employees enough information about his assailants. In describing one attack, Micheli told supervisors his tormentors were slender and black, attorney Jack Shields said. “Had the district rounded up all African-American students who were thin, we’d be here for another reason,” Shields told jurors. The attorney said school brass did everything they could to help Micheli acclimate to his surroundings, including placing him in clubs. But the measures had little impact — and Micheli used a racial epithet during one confrontation with black students, Shields alleged. Finally, staffers ordered that he leave campus as a safety precaution. He and his parents want reimbursement for his parochial school tuition.