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Peakview Principal Brenda Duran speaks out

Student initiated event cancelled after complaints

by Brenda Duran,

Principal of Peakview School

WALSENBURG — I am taking this opportunity to clarify a few complaints that have been reported to Channel 11 news regarding a middle school lock-in (sleep-over) that was going to take place on December 8, 2017 at Peakview.

According to the Channel News 11 reporter, two individuals were appalled that we would allow elementary students to watch the movie, The Conjuring 2.

Let me clarify that the proposal to watch the film came from our student council members.

When I was approached by the proposal, I gave the directive to my counselor to send a permission slip home to the parents informing them of 1) how, and by whom, the movie was selected, and 2) that it could only be viewed if parents gave written consent.

We also reassured parents that if their son/ daughter was not given permission to watch the movie, they would be allowed to participate in other activities overseen by an adult.

Only two out of the twenty-five permission slips sent home came back with “no” as the option.

The second complaint these two individuals had was in regard to the sleeping arrangements for boys and girls. I would hope to think that as the principal of this building, and someone in charge of student safety, I have the professional wisdom to know that having boys sleep in the same quarters as the girls is reckless and irresponsible.

The plan for sleeping arrangements was to have the boys sleeping on one side of a partitioned room with a male chaperone, and the girls sleeping on the other side of the partitioned room with the counselor and me. The partitioned room was intentionally selected so I would have the ability to check on all students at all times.

Since these events have transpired, the supervising staff and I have made the decision to cancel the lock-in for fear that we will be accused of any wrong doing. We will not assume the liability, and quite frankly, we are tired of being scrutinized on social media. I cannot begin to tell you how sad and disappointed our middle schoolers are since the lock-in has been cancelled.

I would like to express my true sadness and frustration that there have been several individuals who have decided to use social media to cast a negative light on our building, staff, and administration.

Instead of inquiring for the facts, they have resorted to Facebook and the media to speak negatively or make false accusations. Do these individuals not realize that it is our students who get penalized?

My plea to our community is to help us deter the negativity that is tarnishing our building by not engaging in the gossip or negative opinions of others. Help speak to the positive things that are going on in our school because there are many.

Please help us remind people, “If you are not helping to make it right, then stop complaining about it being wrong!”

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