Social media threats

(Read the original letter here: LINK)

 

27 August 2019

 

Dear Parents and Guardians:

 

Our school year is off to a fantastic start, and much of that is thanks to you. We know how much work being a caretaker is, and as a school system, we know that we cannot do our job without your support. Therefore, I thank you for this wonderful beginning to a new year of learning in the Carroll County School District, and I thank you in advance for everything that you will do throughout the school year to support your child and our larger school community.

 

We are honored and humbled that you put your children in our care each day.

 

As we move through this second week of school, students, families, and the larger community are settling into new routines. Many of these routines are positive and contribute to the learning process.

 

Unfortunately, technology has given some misguided individuals across the globe the power to disrupt the learning process of our small community through social media.

 

These social media disruptions have become routine, and here at the beginning of the school year, I ask that we all work together to minimize the impact that these routine disruptions have on our students.

 

We take all threats seriously in the Carroll County School District. Roughly 1,900 students are in our care each day, and we take every precaution to ensure that these 1,900 students are safe.

 

For example, when a recent Facebook post from a supposed employee of a sheriff’s office in Arkansas reported a threat to Kentucky schools, we called that sheriff’s office and learned that the person reporting the threat was in fact not an employee there. We later received an email from the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security which said that they were aware of the post; however, they reported the threat as “UNSUBSTANTIATED.” We have been in communication with local law enforcement officials and Kentucky Safe Schools as well, and each of our school resource officers has been briefed on the threat.

 

I wish I could say that this will be the only social media threat directed at Kentucky’s public schools this year, but I cannot say that. These social media threats have become routine.

 

Nevertheless, as a school district, we will continue to take these threats seriously even when they are unsubstantiated hoaxes.

 

However, we will judge each threat on a case-by-case basis and will leverage our relationship with local law enforcement to ensure that we respond appropriately to each threat.

 

Thank you in advance for your trust and your patience as we all navigate this new communication environment. We are here to serve you and your children. If you ever have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to your child’s principal or to our central office administration.

 

Sincerely,

 

 

 

Mark Willhoite

COO/DPP/District School Safety Coordinator

Carroll County School District

 

 

 

 

 

 





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