Investigate Wrongdoing and Demand Accountability from the Chatfield Administration

Investigate Wrongdoing and Demand Accountability from the Chatfield Administration

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Chatfield Community started this petition to Superintendent Jason Glass and

In light of the recent FOX31 report detailing the missteps, cover-ups, and lies produced by the administration of Chatfield Senior High School—specifically Principal Chad Broer and Dean Sarah Bixler—Chatfield students, parents, and the community are now calling on JeffCo Public Schools to conduct an investigation into this matter and to place all involved parties on administrative leave. We believe, ultimately, that both Broer and Bixler must face serious consequences from the school district for their role in the cover-up of evidence that, if handled properly, could have potentially prevented the death of Caden Williamson.

The school was first presented with evidence of Caden and other students' LSD usage roughly one month before Caden's LSD-induced suicide in May of 2019. Alicia Ornelas, the mother of Caden's girlfriend, took evidence of her own daughter's LSD use to school officials—namely Dean Sarah Bixler, Deputy Garrick Kelly, and Counselor Nick Taylor—and asked the school for help in targeting the source of Chatfield's LSD supply. Alicia pointed to earlier unsaved texts between her daughter and Caden in which they discussed their frequent use of the drug, their means of getting it, and their use of LSD and other drugs on school grounds. 

The Cover-Up

After Alicia took this evidence to the administration regarding Caden's LSD use, Sarah Bixler concealed Alicia's report and fabricated a Safe2Tell to use as a cover. Under the premise of this non-existent Safe2Tell, administrators searched Caden's belongings and found a vape pen and pocketknife. Caden was suspended for the possession of these two items, however, when contacting Caden's father in regards to this report the school failed to notify Caden's father that there were credible concerns about Caden's use of LSD or that the tip came from a fellow parent and not Safe2Tell. It is unclear why Bixler chose not to act on the evidence provided by Alicia and why she chose not to conduct any follow-up in the month before Caden's death.

The Lie

Following Caden's death in May of 2019, Caden's father, Brock, along with two other parents, met with Broer and Bixler to ask whether or not they had any knowledge of Caden's LSD use. Both administrators lied directly to Brock's face and claimed to be unaware of Caden's LSD use, furthermore, when Brock asked if the Safe2Tell report mentioned LSD, Bixler claimed she would need to review the non-existent report. After pretending to review the report, Bixler sent Brock an email indicating there was absolutely no mention of LSD.

The Aftermath

In the aftermath of Caden's death, many students were shocked, devastated, and confused as there was very little communication/support from the school. Eventually, Broer sent home an email acknowledging Caden's death in a vague and distant manner, but the school failed to provide any tangible support or explanation for what happened. Brock advocated repeatedly for more information to be released to students to serve as a message and a warning about LSD in the Chatfield community. After repeated inaction from school officials, Alicia and Brock took their plea to the Area Superintendent Scott Allensworth. Allensworth promised a letter would be sent to the Chatfield community in order to alert parents of the LSD-related death and provide them with resources and warning signs to look out for; however, no such letter was ever sent and the school has maintained their silence on this matter.

It is impossible to say that anyone is wholly responsible for Caden's death, however, Chatfield Senior High School and its administration are responsible for the cover-up of evidence that could have been used to intervene in Caden's crisis long before it reached a boiling point. The administration is also responsible for lying to the face of a dead student's parent and for failing to appropriately address the Chatfield community in the time of tragedy.

It is for all of these reasons that the Chatfield community is calling for an in-depth investigation into the administration's mishandling of critical information. Additionally, we are demanding that all involved parties be held responsible for their actions and disciplined appropriately, up to and including termination.

Sign our petition to demand that the truth be revealed and that the administration be held accountable to the Chatfield community. 

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