Friday, May 07, 2010


Controversy has been festering over an event the Georgetown Day School recently hosted at its upper school in Tenleytown. The school held a Go-Go concert, a common and annual occurrence among GDS and its peers.

In response to community questions, ANC Commissioner Jonathan Bender posted this response from GDS Head Peter Branch:

The Go-Go event at GDS on May 1 did not create 'a disturbance.' We are aware of two separate mugging incidents which occurred off campus and were perpetrated by individuals with a prior record upon students who were on their way to the dance. However, it is as provocative to categorize the Go-Go which the students sought to attend as "associated with a number of criminal acts" as it would be to blame the Kennedy Center if you were to be assaulted on your way to see the Washington Ballet.

We do not notify the police in advance of the daily calendar of GDS, nor of every dance. As it happens, notification was given in advance in this case. During the dance, the Fire Marshall's Office certified this event as in compliance with all fire codes, including occupancy capacity. The number of our security staff, including police officers and GDS security, and the number of chaperons were as usual for a dance of this size. Even before the dance began, additional police support was enlisted by our security staff.

I am sorry you have been so misinformed regarding this event. I hope you will convey these facts to anyone still confused about the evening.

Members of the community were sufficiently outraged for calling into question the safety and preparation implemented (or not) by GDS.

Commissioner Bender has shared a follow-up from the Metropolitan Police Department:

we will be serving this school today with a letter and bill for mass MPD services that had to be pulled from 3 different police districts that night - there was no coordination or notification to MPD on this event - also they charged a fee and dont possess a public hall permit --

over 300-400 youth had to be turned away from the front by the Fire Dept due to overcrowding ..we had a youth beaten and robbed for his gogo ticket as well ... this was totally a public safety threat... no regard to community around them.. very irresponsible on behalf of the organizers.

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