School Threats Spike Nationally After Michigan Shooting
Tuesday, December 21, 2021 - 8:19am
Every threat sets off alarm bells, putting staffers, parents and students on edge and forcing administrators to make a choice. “I think we have to take every single threat very seriously right now — it doesn’t matter how it might seem innocuous,” said Laurel Thompson, a board member of the School Social Work Association of America (SSWAA) who was involved in the response to the 2018 shooting at Parkland High School in Florida. “We never know which one is going to be the one. We never want to make a mistake.” When ominous rumors spread on TikTok of a possible day of shootings nationwide last Friday, administrators struggled to understand whether they were genuine. Officials in Maryland’s Howard County wrote a message to families of “a new TikTok challenge encouraging students to make school shooting threats to schools” and asked parents to urge their children not to participate. “At this point, there are no credible threats,” the message said. “However, even hoax threats create fear and cause disruption to the school community.”
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