DENVER (KDVR) — FOX31 heard from the attorney of the now-terminated McAuliffe International School Principal Kurt Dennis.
In a 6-1 vote, the Denver Public Schools board voted to terminate the employment of the embattled former principal. His initial reaction?
“He’s just glad to be done with DPS at this point,” said David Lane, Dennis’ attorney.
FOX31 also spoke with Kwame Spearman, a school board candidate who organized a rally to support Dennis before he was terminated.
“That probably was not the right environment for our students and something that needs to be investigated,” Spearman said, talking about the seclusion room, reportedly at McAuliffe, that led to Dennis’ firing.
The so-called seclusion room was reportedly locked from outside, against DPS policy, and students of color were allegedly held inside the room as well.
Despite that, and as others argued before, Spearman said Dennis deserved to have his side of the story told, either by himself or through an investigation.
“We’ve got to have a district that ensures due process for our teachers and our administrators, and I’m sure that due process has yet been done in this situation,” Spearman said.
No investigation report, attorney claims
As for Dennis, his attorney said he’s thinking of the most practical thing to do after losing his job.
“He’s looking hard for another job with a school district that respects the Constitution of the United States of America,” Lane said.
FOX31 asked Lane for his client’s termination letter or his personnel file from DPS.
“Members of the board say … we’ve given the latest investigation report to Kurt Dennis,” Lane said. “Neither Kurt has it nor do I have it.”
As for the school he leaves behind, Lane has a message from Dennis to his now-former students.
“His message is he loved working at McAuliffe,” Lane said. “Those kids are his life. He took great pride in the fact that McAuliffe had the best test scores of any school in the district. That includes children of color, white children — everybody’s test scores were better at McAuliffe. He took great pride in that, and he loved those kids.”
Lane said his client will seek damages, which he said will come at a cost to taxpayers in Denver, and that if his lawsuit is successful he might take his job back at McAuliffe.
Lane admitted it’s too early to know if that’s a certainty.