2 Denver School of the Arts teachers accused of misconduct will not be returning to class

DENVER — Two vocal teachers at Denver School of The Arts accused of misconduct will not be returning to their positions at the school, according to a letter sent to parents Wednesday.

The letter — written by the school’s principal, William Kohut — does not identify the two teachers. However, the school’s website lists only two vocal faculty members: Scott Shively and Robert Styron.

Shively and Styron had been placed on administrative leave in May of this year following allegations the two engaged in abusive behavior toward students.

“I know that there has been considerable discussion and concern, both privately and publicly, over the last several months about the vocal music department, and I have heard from many of you and heard many different viewpoints. Because of privacy concerns –both student privacy and teacher privacy, I am not in the position to go into further detail here,” Kohut writes.

According to complaints filed by parents and obtained by Colorado Public Radio, Shively and Styron engaged in a pattern of “enduring humiliation, racism, and character demeaning in an atmosphere dominated by fear.”

Students also allege the teachers would lower grades without explanation in retaliation for a student complaining to their parents about their alleged behavior. 

Kohut writes that this “will be a year of rebuilding and visioning for our vocal music program.” He informs parents that a vocal music committee will be formed to “provide input into any changes and visioning for this program.”

Kohut said the school is also in the process of hiring a parent/family liaison to begin when school starts.
 

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