Berklee College of Music is dealing with backlash over sexual harassment on campus. Hundreds of students walked out of class Monday and onto Massachusetts Avenue to show their displeasure about how the school has handled sexual assault.
President Roger Brown says 11 faculty members have been fired during the past 13 years for sexual assault and harassment.
He apologized during a Monday forum to students who have been assaulted and pledged to "root out abusive behavior."
"I admire their courage in coming forward and am grateful for their activism," Brown said of the victims in a statement. "We have a shared commitment to remove, from our campus, anyone responsible for sexual misconduct. In fact, during my 13-year tenure, 11 of our 650 faculty members have been terminated for sexual harassment and/or assault."
The forum comes after an investigation by the Boston Globe found Berklee has allowed three professors to quietly leave the school since 2008 after students complained the men had sexually harassed or assaulted them.
The investigation found several students reported being assaulted, groped or pressured into sex with teachers.
"It's unacceptable, it breaks my heart, and I'm sorry," Brown said.
Students protested the alleged assaults by marching to the performance center where the campus forum was held.
"Berklee is not doing the right things to make sure that sexual predators are not allowed on campus," student Michela McDonagh said.
Students have called for more transparency and tougher penalties for anyone accused.
NBC Boston's cameras were not allowed inside the forum, but students livestreamed the president's apology online, which included a promise to do better.
"I pledge with all the energy and creativity that I have to work as hard as possible to eliminate abuse and harassment from the Berklee community.”
The school says they will expand hours for students to report sexual assault and there will be a group of students and faculty to address ongoing campus concerns.