DPS releases letter praising Manual principal, calls him courageous

The letter from Superintendent Tom Boasberg literally refers to Principal Dawkins as a light bringer.

KUSA - Denver Public Schools released a letter praising Principal Nick Dawkins of Manual High School less than a week after he accused Weld Central of racism at a football game at the Denver school.

In a letter signed by DPS Superintendent Tom Boasberg and Deputy Superintendent Susana Cordova, both school leaders said Dawkins "brings the light" to the Manual High School community.

"There are so many good things happening at Manual that it is hard to capture them in one letter," they write. Boasberg and Cordova point to recent bright spots at Manual, including the increase in enrollment and the joy in learning felt in the school's hallways.

It isn't until the fourth paragraph of the letter, which you can read in full here, that the controversy between Dawkins and Weld Central last weekend is mentioned.

Referencing the hardships Dawkins has had to deal with - including the recent tragic loss of one of their students - Boasberg and Cordova say he's been a leader since the football game between Weld Central and Manual.

RELATEDRacism allegations from Manual HS principal prompt rebuttal from Weld Central

Dawkins published the letter almost a full day after the game, levying harsh criticism toward Weld Central, its players and the actions of those in attendance. DPS posted the letter to their website and Facebook page.

He accused Weld Central players of using racial slurs during the game and said a Confederate flag was put on display. Dawkins also included references to players being injured during the game, including one player who had to be taken to the hospital. 

Manual lost to Weld Central 48 - 12.

"What occurred is extremely concerning and I want to share the facts as I know them at this time," Dawkins wrote in his original letter.

Manual High's student body is over 90 percent Hispanic and African-American students. 

However, less than a day after the accusations were made public, Weld Central staff, including the principal, rebutted those claims - calling them significantly inaccurate - and argued there was no evidence for them.

Weld Central athletics employees told 9NEWS they reviewed the game footage and said they didn't see any Confederate flag at the game. The footage showed to 9NEWS was inconclusive.

Both schools, now, look to be trying to move past this incident without much more happening. A joint statement released Tuesday says that based on evidence, both schools agree there was no Confederate flag.

Neither Dawkins, Manual, nor DPS has issued an apology to the student players of Weld Central, the coaches, or the staff there.

Read the full joint statement at this link.

In their joint statement, both schools say they've created a 'Student Leadership Exchange' so that students at both schools can meet and exchange ideas.

Can't see the video? Click here

This Friday, Manual has their homecoming game at 6 p.m. against Front Range Christian. Boasberg and Cordova invite the entire Manual community out to the game.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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