DENVER (KDVR) — A Denver public school that has been the center of controversy for its “Black Lives Matter” initiatives has requested increased security after someone lied to gain access to the campus and caused disruption Monday.
A letter was sent to parents of Centennial school students regarding a person who verbally abused parents and staff and carried a sign protesting the Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action. During dismissal, the person walked around with the sign and interacted with several parents.
“This event may have been very disturbing for some of our staff, students and parents. Please know that safety is our top priority, and that we do not believe any staff, students or parents were in any immediate danger,” the letter said.
Some parents said the school is downplaying this incident and that more needs to be done to protect the young students.
“What concerns me about this incident is just about every safety protocol put in place was disregarded,” said one parent who wished to remain anonymous.
The school said it has been receiving a lot of vulgar and angry emails and calls but believes they are coming from non-Centennial families, possibly even individuals outside Denver and the state.
“If they are getting threats and this is known, they should have had something in place before. I think it’s a complete failure on the management of the school,” a parent told FOX31.
While believing security needs to be stepped up, this parent said the school needs to take a deeper look at what is causing these disturbances. This is the same school that received national attention for hosting a “Families of Color Playground Night” in December.
“This being the only school in the district that is pursuing this curriculum right now, it puts a direct bulls-eye on an elementary school for protests or any other issues to come about. There is no reason my son should be in a school that has a direct bulls-eye on it for controversy. An elementary school to boot,” one parent said.
What DPS is doing about the incident
Denver police told FOX31 they were not contacted about this incident and did not respond to the school on Monday. But said they are aware of the situation and are working with Denver Public Schools security.
The Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action begins Monday, Jan. 31 and Centennial has requested increased patrols from DPS’ Department of Safety during dropoff, pickup and throughout the day.
It is the mission of Denver Public Schools (DPS) to provide all students the opportunity to achieve the knowledge and skills necessary to become contributing citizens in our diverse society. In 2019, the DPS Board of Education signed a resolution requiring that all schools in our family of schools participate in an equity-building initiative. By participating in the national Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action, the school is creating age-appropriate spaces to start important conversations about how our unique perspectives and experiences are contributions to our society that should be celebrated.DPS statement
“We have already made adjustments to our entry policy to better ensure that our schools remain safe. We are not able to share those adjustments,” DPS said in another statement.