Who is Rachael Ayers? Colorado principal quits as students reenact George Floyd murder

A picture of three White students of Mead High School, reenacting George Floyd's death, went viral last month. The student meant to represent Floyd was wearing blackface


                            Who is Rachael Ayers? Colorado principal quits as students reenact George Floyd murder
Principal Rachael Ayers has resigned (Credits: mhs.svvsd.org)

A Colorado high school principal has resigned after a picture of three White students from her school, Mead High School, reenacting the death of George Floyd, went viral on the Internet.

Mead High School Principal Rachael Ayers announced her resignation in a letter on Monday, June 7, to St Vrain Valley School District Superintendent Don Haddad. In a photo posted online last month, the three Mead High School students were seen reenacting George Floyd's murder, which happened on May 25, 2020, at the hands of former police officer Derek Chauvin. The student meant to represent Floyd was wearing blackface.

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Haddad later called the photo "disturbing and disgusting." "We in the St Vrain Valley Schools strongly condemn, and have no tolerance for, racism in any form and will be addressing this extremely serious matter immediately and accordingly," she wrote in a letter.

Haddad released a letter to the community, reading in part, “Rachael Ayers has made the decision to resign as Principal at Mead High School. I want to thank her for her lengthy service to the Mead High community for the past 12 years as a teacher, assistant principal, and principal, and I wish Mrs. Ayers the very best in her future endeavors. I understand how important strong leadership is in this time of change at Mead High, and to this end, I am excited to share that Dr. Brian Young has been appointed as the new Principal of Mead High School.”  

Young will be hosting community meetings to "discuss advancing student success and achievement with a focus on a safe and inclusive school environment and culture for every student, teacher, staff, and community member." 

A Twitter user identifying as an alumnus of the school brought attention to the photo and shared a Change.org petition calling on the students to be held accountable and for Ayers to "bring it to attention as she should."

A total number of 8,988 people had signed the petition at the time of publication. He tweeted: "I know I have a very small following, but something happened at my old high school that truly makes me sick. A student did blackface and him and some other students recreated George Floyd's death. Signing the petition would be great, and spreading the word." He also said, "This petition is mostly so the principal does something instead of ignoring the situation. I'm truly embarrassed to have graduated from here and these students don't represent what Mead stands for."



 



 

Local groups including the NAACP Boulder County Chapter reacted to the photo by calling on the school district to address it and systemic racism in institutions overall. A protest was held outside the school by current and former students shortly after the photos went viral.

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