CHICAGO - Students at Lincoln Park High School staged a massive walkout Monday to protest the suspension of the school's principal and assistant principal.
They are also furious after the basketball season was canceled. The students and some parents are demanding an explanation from CPS.
CPS says there are four current investigations, some involving alleged sexual misconduct, incidents with the boys’ basketball team, as well as the girls’ basketball team.
Now, the principal, assistant principal, school dean and basketball coach have been removed.
The allegations are severe.
“There are both allegations of adult-on-student sexual misconduct as well as student-on-student sexual misconduct,” said Deb Spraggins, CPS Director of Investigations. “I can't answer how many students but multiple students.”
Many Monday night say there were problems at Lincoln Park High School well before the new administrators started in the fall.
“You have to realize this is a bigger thing and it can’t come on the shoulders of people who have been here for four months, that is unfair and unprofessional," said Kelley Gossler, Band Director.
The auditorium was packed with curious faculty, parents and students as Chicago Public Schools addressed the removal of Interim Principal John Thuet, Assistant Principal Michelle Brumfield, Dean John Johnson, reassigning the boys’ basketball coach and suspending the boys' basketball season.
"The decision was not taken lightly,” said Bogdana Chkoumbova, Chief Schools Officer. “We cannot share details about the investigation or what needs to happen.”
The abrupt administrative departures stem from an incident of alleged misconduct in December with the boys’ basketball team. CPS says they then received more complaints of sexual misconduct and reports of student-on-student retaliation not being reported by administrators.
News of the four serious investigations didn’t sway the popular vote. The crowd raved about the administrators calling them positive change-makers.
New interim administrators have been named and CPS says the high school will go through a safety audit. Students say they may be protesting again.