The Evolution of D49: “Sunlight Disinfecting” & Truth Arising

The Evolution of D49: “Sunlight Disinfecting” & Truth Arising by Ivy Liu

Throughout my 2.5-year tenure on the D49 School Board, I have been a witness to the most unethical and deplorable misconduct.

When I joined the board in April 2021, they advised me against rocking the boat or being disruptive. Previous boards failed to confront the administration’s declining academic scores and stewardship of finances.

As a former high school principal of 500 students, Peter Hilts became the D49 Superintendent ten years ago and ran D49 alongside lawyer Brad Miller and BOE member John Graham.

Academic scores dropped by 20-25% from twelve years ago. According to the Colorado Department of Education (CDE), 55-70% of D49 students do not perform at grade level in reading/writing and math respectively. Low-income and minority students fare worse.

The Gazette recently published that D49 with 25K students ranked third from the bottom in the Pikes Peak region, beating only Hanover SD and the School for Deaf and Blind with 300 and 160 students, respectively. Separately, awarded D49 a grade of C in “Academics” and a C- in “Administration.” [1]

Last year, D49’s “Post-Secondary and Workforce Readiness” plummeted to 27%, marking a new low for the district according to CDE. This poses a significant challenge whether students are heading towards skilled trades, white or blue-collar jobs, or college.

I disclosed these CDE statistics to the community in my board presentations and social media to emphasize the dire need for immediate mitigation.  My behind the scenes efforts fell on deaf ears.

In response, I was viciously maligned, attacked, and defamed by Hilts, Miller, Graham, Van Wieren, and Thompson for  accountability from the Superintendent.  Gaslighting escalated as I was falsely accused of “attacking teachers” and “creating a negative culture,”

With cancel culture on steroids, the Gang of Five censured and stripped me of my board treasurer office and committee liaison positions WITHOUT due process or just cause in April 2022. This was supposed to force me to quit my elected office out of embarrassment.

Coincidentally, an outspoken board member was dealt a similar ambush in another school district where Brad Miller was attempting to secure a lucrative contract. She quit to protect her family business.

Mob rule. I refused to succumb to the bullying and cancel culture.

Next, the Gang of Five orchestrated a larger scale censure on 10 November 2022 in the form of a colossal public humiliation and harassment by leftists. [2]

With Brad Miller as legal counsel, eleven bogus criminal and civil allegations were announced in an orchestrated media blow-up. This censure once again infringed on my freedom of speech and violated my right to due process.  They have yet to present any evidence, one year later

Mob rule. I refused to succumb to the bullying and cancel culture.

Brad Miller and Peter Hilts are adept at targeting those who challenge their authority. The next ambush was a gerrymandering scheme that effectively ensured I could not run for school board in November 2023.

I circumvented that chess move by relocating in compliance with State Statutes. Miller proceeded to interfere with my petition process which included perjury by the Designated Election Officer. We have direct evidence that Miller is the source of a leak of privileged information to the leftists about my “disqualification.”

The board of D49 is now the sole exception in El Paso County’s large districts, lacking a conservative majority in a community with over 65% conservatives.

Miller charged the district $200/hr to stalking opposition on Social Media.  Mr. Hilts has been awfully busy targeting me. How are the kids’ academics doing, Mr. Hilts?

Taxpayers deserve an explanation and plans for scraping D49 off the dirt, given his new salary of over $250k, compliments of John Graham, Rick Van Wieren, and Lori Thompson.

The district has lost numerous quality senior leaders and staff these last few years. We have lost numerous families to home schools, charter schools, or other school districts. A significant number of new families in the school district are opting to enroll their kids elsewhere. [3]

A federal lawsuit was filed against BOE President John Graham for encroaching upon constituents’ freedom of speech, resulting in substantial costs for D49. Despite Miller’s billing of over $220K, the board hired an external lawyer to represent Graham, who refused to take responsibility for his misconduct.  Miller flies under the radar. The district has to bear the cost of one person’s inappropriate behavior.

A lawsuit for defamation has been filed against Graham, Van Wieren, and Thompson in Nov 2023 as my requests for a retraction and reconciliation were ignored. The only recourse left was legal action. 

Graham, Hilts, and Miller implemented a ban on three community members that could have turned into a lawsuit. D49 taxpayers are not aware of these violations of constitutionally protected rights and wasteful expenditures.

Mob rule.

John Graham is known for his bullying conduct in board meetings and through email. Graham lawlessly isolated two elected board members from normal board processes, effectively silencing the conservative community these two represented. [4].

Graham, Van Wieren, and Thompson incessantly gloat about being “conservative Constitutional Christians” while following marching orders to vote through the superintendent’s progressive policies.

Fifty some years ago, my dad made a tremendous sacrifice by moving his family to the U.S. away from the influence of Communist China. The irony is that we’re witnessing a totalitarian regime in D49.

THANK GOD more and more community members are learning the truth and are stepping up to expose D49 and fight for kids who are being failed by adults with ulterior motives.






2 thoughts on “The Evolution of D49: “Sunlight Disinfecting” & Truth Arising”

  1. This was done out of order for new business. President Graham only said that Mr. Miller had to leave. There was no vote on changing the agenda to read this “report”. Director D’Avola’s numerous points of order were ignored. Everyone else is expected to follow Roberts Rules and proper decorum- unless you are against Director Liu.

  2. Was this on the approved agenda? How does this guy just get to get up and speak when the public has to jump through ridiculous hoops and prioritization for two minutes?Everyone else is expected to follow the agenda, Roberts Rules, and proper decorum. I guess there are different rules if you are against Director Liu.


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