Danny Trejo Speaks Up For Students After Sylmar High School Brawl
Following a massive student fight at Sylmar High School, actor Danny Trejo urged school officials to listen to students for a solution to campus tension.
The Machete actor—known for his violent roles and tacos—attended a community meeting Wednesday night aimed at addressing racial concerns following Monday's campus brawl involving roughly 40 students, reports the L.A. Times. While Trejo doesn't have a direct connection to the school, the San Fernando Valley resident has developed a reputation as a youth advocate and champion of local issues and was urged by teachers to attend, according to ABC 7.
At the meeting, school administrators, including new LAUSD Superintendent Michelle King, discussed an "action plan" to address the fight and safety issues. But when it seemed that students weren't being given the opportunity to voice their concerns, Trejo stood up and insisted that officials give them the floor, according to the Times. "You're not listening to them," he said, pointing to the crowd. "They'll come up with the solution."
The format of the meeting quickly changed and students were given the opportunity to speak, many of whom expressed frustrations over security on campus. "I don’t feel safe in school," student Shane Bennett said, according to the Times. "We have to walk around in groups at school because we don’t feel safe."
While the cause of the fight is still under investigation, some students suggested that gang tensions, race and an incident where a student was hit in the head with a bottle at a prom afterparty, were likely motivators for the violence.
At the meeting, Sylmar High School Principal James Lee said that he plans to put together a task force of students, parents and administrators to address the issues surrounding the fight, but also said steps need to be taken to make students feel safer in the meantime.
"The first time Mexicans and African Americans got together, we got a black president," Trejo added during the discussion, urging an easing of racial tensions. "So, good things can really happen when we get together."