DAVENPORT, Iowa — A letter sent to students from a school guidance counselor identifies a group of Assumption High School students re-enacting the death of George Floyd in a video that's circulating on the social media app, TikTok. Some students and parents said they wanted the kids in the video expelled from school. They are calling for change.
The TikTok 10-second video is confusing to some. Watch it, and you'll see a person identified as an Assumption sophomore kneeling on another student's neck, similar to what former Minneapolis police officer Dereck Chauvin did to George Floyd back in May. Floyd later died.
One Assumption student who talked to News 8 on camera doesn't want to be identified, but they do have something to say about the TikTok video.
"It wasn't right, it wasn't. None of that was funny. It wasn't called for at all," says the student.
One Assumption parent kept his three kids home from school on Thursday, October 29, 2020 in an act of solidarity and to send a message to the school leaders that they want the kids in the video held accountable.
Another student telling News 8 off camera, that they want that too.
"What I hear is that they have Saturday school. That's it. In my opinion, they should be expelled," said a student.
"I hope they do get consequences, and I hope it shows that wasn't right and that can't be happening," said another.
This is leaving students and parents demanding consequences and hoping for meaningful change.
On Thursday evening administrators at Assumption High School sent a joint statement saying they were working with the students involved.
Here is the full statement:
"All people are created in the image and likeness of God. As an educational institution, we work with students and families to promote understanding. The Assumption Family is heartbroken by recent social media activity reflecting a highly unacceptable attitude regarding the precious gift of life. We recognize the hurtful impact of the posting and the reality that social media has the power to affect all people.
We as a school try to teach our youth to celebrate the diversity within our own community and the broader community. Understanding the lives of others is the best way to truly understand ourselves. Our words and actions affect others. Sometimes they cause pain. We realize there is more work to do. As a Catholic institution, we are committed to ongoing efforts to educate in alignment with Gospel values and teaching. True love of neighbor is consistently willing the good of another. We are working with the students directly involved in this situation along with our entire student body to promote healing, safety, compassion, mercy, and understanding.
One in the Spirit,
Assumption High School Administration "
A guidance counselor, Kelly Bush, sent out an email to students with the message that the video is not what Assumption represents. She said she hoped they would be able to use the incident as a learning tool to make a positive impact on students and the community.