Covington Catholic High School was closed Tuesday amid safety concerns over Friday’s viral encounter between students and a tribal elder, while protesters held a rally outside the diocese in Covington, Kentucky.
The protest, led by the American Indian Movement chapters of Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio, was billed as a “peaceful vigil to confront racism.”
Meanwhile, school officials sent a letter home to families canceling class on Tuesday, the first day of school since the incident between students and Omaha Nation tribal elder Nathan Phillips on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in D.C.
“After meeting with local authorities, we have made the decision to cancel school and be closed on Tuesday, January 22, in order to ensure the safety of our students, faculty and staff,” said the letter posted on WKRC-TV in Cincinnati.
“All activities on campus will be cancelled for the entire day and evening. Students, parents, faculty and staff are not to be on campus for any reason,” said the letter. “Please continue to keep the Covington Catholic Community in your prayers.”
A crowd of onlookers, including at least one wearing a Make America Great Again hat, could be seen watching the protest on news footage from Fox19 in Cincinnati.
The rally was originally planned to be held at the school but was moved to the Diocese of Covington.
“Our concern is the adults — we want to hold the administration, teachers and seemingly absent chaperones accountable in this situation,” the American Indian Movement said in a Facebook post.