As allegations mount against Tay Anderson, and justice is not yet served, a group of current and former DPS students is leading a protest outside the next DPS board meeting on June 10th at Denver City Hall.
Gigi Gordon, who began the petition to release new diplomas, without Anderson’s name, to any DPS student who wants one, will be leading this protest, with the help of Protest Mom Mary Katherine Brooks Fleming, who testified May 25th that there was a preadator inside DPS. Additionally, the group “End Human Trafficking Everywhere” will help lead the protest at DPS.
The protest event reads, “the students of DPS demand justice for every child who has been neglected and ignored by DPS. We stand strong against child predators and with our fellow peers who have been a victim of sexual abuse from MULTIPLE adults at DPS. DPS has known about plenty of accusations but chooses to ignore them and allow accused child predators to work near children for years. We are fed up with our safety and our livelihood being a game to DPS and we are ready to stand up for justice and fight for it. We are told to trust the adults who teach us, protect us, and prepare us for real life, but instead we were failed over and over again by the same adults. We are done waiting on these people to take action because clearly they never will. It is time for us as students to stand together against predatory adults who work in our school system and against the adults who allow it.”
“The Denver school board will be in a meeting during this time which is why we chose this time to protest. Each and every person will be offered two minutes to speak on why this is important to them and why they believe that DPS isn’t doing enough. We encourage everybody to speak on this important event because people need to know from students how bad this really is. All students need to be heard. Sign up for public comment for June 10th. Tell everybody what really happens in the school district and help us fight for justice for the many many victims of DPS. Public comment begins on June 10 at 5:30 PM and all deadlines to sign up end on June 9th at 5 p.m.”
According to several of Anderson’s alleged victims, he assaulted them during his tenure as RP Coordinator at North High School. Before Mary Katherine Brooks Fleming’s Tuesday testimony last week, a small student-led group of current and former North students had reported their allegations of sexual assault by Anderson to several North teachers. Due to the lack of actions taken by DPS, the students reportedly planned to wage a social media and online effort to “out Tay Anderson” as their abuser.
Allegedly, Anderson caught wind of the plans and attended North graduation as an intimidation practice. A victim states that Anderson told her, “my name will still be on your diploma,” and this sentiment has been echoed across the Denver children’s BLM circles.
It’s for that reason that a petition was started by Gigi Gordon to have new diplomas, without Anderson’s name, issued to any student who wants one.
While new diplomas speak volumes about the students’ need to erase Anderson from their educational histories and daily memories, next week’s protest allows students to use their voices, which they’ve used all year to champion various social justice causes, to draw attention to the injustices they’ve endured as students, while the adults in charge threw their hands up in the air and told them “our hands are tied.”
In the fall of 2020, as rape allegations at East High School escalated, the school’s mandatory reporting system failed, and the system continued to fail until these allegations against Anderson were brought to light.
Now, it’s up to the kids to ensure justice is served.