NY District Increases Security Following Multiple Threats to Middle School

NY District Increases Security Following Multiple Threats to Middle School

The Mamaroneck School District is beefing up security after a number of alleged threats made recently toward Hommocks Middle School.

The Mamaroneck School District is increasing its security measures following recent threats made toward a middle school campus. According to School Superintendent Robert Shaps, the district “has been challenged by three unrelated instances of alleged student threats to the safety of Hommocks Middle School.”

The first threat occurred Tuesday, June 11, when Hommocks administrators were notified that a middle school student had threatened harm toward classmates. Authorities were alerted, and after an investigation it was determined that the student was not in the building at the time and was under supervision at all times. The student’s parents were notified and authorities determined there was no threat to student safety.

Police were contacted and a lockout was initiated on Friday, June 14, after a student informed someone that a student not attending school that day had made a threat against the campus. Police found no active or credible threat, and the lockout was lifted.

The most recent incident occurred Monday, June 17, when a former middle school student no longer living in or near Mamaroneck School District made a threat via social media during the weekend. Shaps said that authorities “took immediately action to investigate and advised us that there was no active or credible threat to students and staff.”

None of the threats were found to be credible. According to Shaps, none of the threats appeared to be connected.

“We will always exercise our safety protocols swiftly and rely upon law enforcement for expertise and guidance,” he said. "Further, parents and students alike should understand that the district will not tolerate nor excuse student acts that pose serious and immediate safety threats to our students and staff.”

Following these threats, the district held a Board of Education meeting Tuesday, June 18, and plans to increase security and safety measures throughout the district.

Funding has been approved for more security cameras, as well as a visitor management system requiring identification for everyone entering the campus.

“The issue of communication while an alleged threat is being investigated is of critical importance,” Shaps added. “Parents and staff have a right to know what we are doing to fulfill our first-priority mandate to maintain safe and secure school environments. However, there are times when we can only provide limited information based upon law enforcement guidance or legal concerns, or are challenged to communicate in a timely way based upon insufficiency of information.”

Shaps said that the district will review its existing procedures for communication during the summer. New security measures are expected to be in place by the beginning of the school year this fall.