Education

Will Tay Anderson Report Be Worth $105,000 and Six Months of Chaos?

Tay Anderson has already seen a copy of the report.
Tay Anderson has already seen a copy of the report. Courtesy of Fox31
Editor's note: The Denver School Board released the report about Tay Anderson during the late afternoon of September 15. Learn more in our post "'Do It, Bitch:' How Tay Anderson Report Nailed Bugs Bunny." Continue for our previous coverage.

Denver Public Schools is about to release the results of the investigation it commissioned into embattled Denver School Board member Tay Anderson, who's been accused of sexual misconduct — claims he has repeatedly denied.

DPS received the report from the Investigative Law Group on September 13; it gave a copy to Anderson yesterday, September 14. Although the district hasn't divulged when it will go public today, it's revealed that the report is 96 pages in length and cost $105,449.63.

That's a high price to pay — but the chaos that's shaken the district since last spring has come at an even higher cost.


The drama around Anderson has been roiling since March 26, when Black Lives Matter 5280 released a claim that he had sexually assaulted an unidentified woman. Then on May 25, Denver Public Schools parent Mary-Katherine Brooks Fleming told the Colorado House judiciary committee that 61 high school students and one recent graduate had come to her the previous August with charges against a person "in a position of trust," who was quickly assumed to be Anderson.

The Denver School Board subsequently tasked ILG with looking into all of the Anderson-related allegations, even though no complaints had been filed against him with the Denver Police Department. (The DPD will neither confirm nor deny that it looked into the matter.) During a June 10 meeting, just over a week after Anderson revealed that he would be stepping back for his everyday duties, the board conceded that the inquiry might not be completed until "the end of the summer."

This deadline will be met with a week to spare. But Anderson got tired of waiting. Early on July 14, he announced that he'd be resuming his board duties, and in a press conference later that day, he admitted that he'd considered suicide during the furor before putting other members of the board on blast for the way they'd handled the situation. He also lit up the media for its coverage. "You have not only failed me, but you also are complicit in the white supremacist attacks that have happened to my family," he said.

Here's a video of the press conference, courtesy of 9News.
Since then, the district has been silent regarding ILG's probe, but some of the investigation's scope did leak out. For example, investigators asked to quiz me — a request that was denied.

Then, late on September 13, the Denver School Board issued a press release that began: "The Investigative Law Group (ILG) has completed its investigation of the public allegations made against Denver Public Schools Board Member Tay Anderson and today delivered its report on the investigation to the Board’s counsel. The allegations made against Director Anderson were serious and warranted a thorough, independent review to ensure the safety of the DPS community and a fair process for Director Anderson." The report would be "partially redacted by the board's counsel to protect the privacy of students who participated in the investigation," and "no statement about the report itself will be made until the report has been shared with Director Anderson and the public."

The announced schedule revealed that the seven-member board would receive the report that day. Anderson would be made to wait until September 14, the announcement noted, and he would receive a redacted copy. Then, on September 15, that version would be shared with the public, accompanied by a statement from the board. Both will be posted on the board's website.

Thus far, the only statement on the topic that's appeared on Anderson's Twitter account arrived at 9:19 a.m. on September 14. "Thank you to everyone that has been reaching out with positive messages and prayers," he said. "God is in control."

Good to hear someone is.
KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts