State tells Mount Clemens school officials ‘to hold right people accountable’ in twerking incident – Macomb Daily

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The twerking incident from last weekend that landed Mount Clemens High School in widespread negative publicity has caught the attention of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s cabinet.

School officials on Monday received a strongly-worded letter from Tricia Foster, the governor’s chief operating officer.

The letter stated Foster was writing to express “our strong disapproval” of the reported event. She said parents in Michigan want their children to receive a quality education to excel in life and work.

“Our schools serve as the foundation of these goals and pillars of our communities, so it is important that every district presents an appropriate environment of learning that puts the best interest of students and parents first at all times,” Foster said in her letter.

“What has been reported from this weekend does not comport with these goals or values.”

At issue is a continuing controversy over an event titled Peezy’s Sweetest Day Bash held Saturday night at the school, which was moved there instead of Wisner Memorial Stadium in Pontiac due to cold weather.

Monique Beels  Mount Clemens Community Schools superintendent (FILE PHOTO)

Mitch Hotts

Monique Beels  Mount Clemens Community Schools superintendent (FILE PHOTO)

About 20 acts performed at the school, including rapper O.T. Rell who was seen in online videos performing in the high school gym floor as a backup dancer dressed in a swimsuit gyrated nearby. School officials said they were “disgusted” the rapper’s performance, which they said included a simulated sex act on the scantly-clad woman as she twerked on the Battling Bathers circle at midfloor on the basketball court.

As the video was shared on social media, the school superintendent and Board of Education were incensed by what they called a total misrepresentation by the person who rented the gym for a “charity”  event.

School board President Earl Rickman III said his phone was deluged with calls from angry parents and others.

In her letter to the district, Foster said state officials want the school district to “conduct an immediate review to determine how such a large oversight or lapse in judgement was allowed to occur. We are further asking that you take action to hold the right people accountable for the events that unfolded.”

The letter also encouraged the school district to implement policies, procedures, and safeguards to “ensure this never happens again.”

Foster also reminded school leaders that Whitmer earlier this year signed legislation granting districts across the state “record funding” to help students learn and allow districts to hire and retain educators and staff, upgrade building infrastructure, and provide afterschool programs.

“Our top priority is always putting students and parents first,” wrote Foster, the former head of the Department of Technology, Management and Budget.

Monique Beels, superintendent of Mount Clemens Community Schools, said Tuesday she has banned the event promoter from ever again renting school facilities.

Asked if she would reconsider and give Quentin Hines, a Mount Clemens alum, another chance, Beels stated: “Absolutely not.”

Quentin Hines, found and CEO of the Rivals Recruiting organization, had a winless high school football season in 2015 when he served as coach in Mount Clemens. (FILE PHOTO)
Quentin Hines, found and CEO of the Rivals Recruiting organization, had a winless high school football season in 2015 when he served as coach in Mount Clemens. (FILE PHOTO)

Beels further said a full investigation into the raunchy behavior is underway.

Hines is the head of Rivals Recruiting Worldwide, a professional football league that provides adult football players an opportunity to gain more experience while attaining game film that be used to market the players to the NFL and the CFL.

A former member of the New England Patriots and a one-time Mount Clemens High School football team coach, Hines said he only met the rapper this month and wasn’t aware he was having an “underdressed” dancer perform with him.

“I’m sorry it happened,” Hines told the Macomb Daily on Monday.

He acknowledged he could have done a “better job at screening the entertainers” who performed Saturday. He said he paid $2,000 to rent out the gym for Rivals Recruiting.

As to reports the incident was being investigated by the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office, Hines said “nothing illegal happened,” adding there was no drug use or alcohol being consumed on school property.

The district released a statement over the weekend saying they are “deeply shocked, disappointed, and disgusted” by the incident.

Rickman, the school board president, said Hines had told school leaders the event was for charity.

“Simulating sex acts in a high school gym doesn’t sound like a charity to me. I’m pretty sure we would not have granted him permission had he told us about this,” Rickman said Monday.

 

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