Fatima Ptacek, the child star known best for her voice on Nickelodeon’s beloved cartoon “Dora the Explorer,” allegedly peer pressured another girl at her elite private New York high school to vape.
Ptacek, 15, is a student at Manhattan’s Avenues: The World School, according to the Associated Press. She was caught using a vape pen to inhale caramel-flavored water in the high school’s bathroom along with another young female student last December.
Ptacek was suspended for three days, while the other student was expelled and kicked out of Manhattan’s Avenues. According to a lawsuit filed on Monday, the parents of the 14-year-old girl are suing the school for giving the “Dora the Explorer” actress special celebrity treatment.
In the State Supreme Court civil case, Ptacek is referred to by her initials “F.P” and listed as an actress in an Oscar-winning movie. Parents Nadia Leonelli and Fredrik Sundwall, who referred to their daughter as “M.S.,” stated:
“The fact that F.P. is a known actress for being the voice of Dora Explorer may have played a role in why she was ultimately not expelled even after the school threatened as much, and M.S. was expelled instead as a scapegoat.”
They said the reason their daughter allegedly gave in to the peer pressure was because she wanted to look “cool” in front of Ptacek, who is a celebrity and a grade older. Leonelli and Sundwall are seeking $40,000 in damages for tuition payment and legal fees and to have their daughter reinstated in the school.