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Oswego District 308 Warns of School Violence Rumors

School posts announcement and a worried parent contacts Patch about her children attending school tomorrow.

The Mayan calendar states that next Friday, Dec. 21, 2012, is the end of the world.

Oswego District 308 officials are taking action about rumors that there is a threat of violence set to occur in the school district due to this belief in the Mayan calendar.

The following statement was posted to the district's website early this afternoon:

It has come to our attention that rumors have been circulating around our school community about December 21, our last day of school before winter break, and winter solstice, which marks the end of one of the cycles in the ancient Mayan calendar.  

The media hype surrounding this date has resulted in predictions that include such things as a national power outage to the end of the world. The same type of predictions have been made in the past, including events surrounding the transition to the Year 2000 and all that was predicted with Y2K. These situations resulted in anxiety, rumors and predictions prior to the actual date. 

We are contacting parents and staff members because we have learned of student-initiated rumors about school violence occurring on or before December 21. School safety is a priority for School District 308 and such rumors about a threat to our students and staff are taken seriously.

Our students are encouraged to discuss any such rumors or threats of school violence with adults, including their parents, guardians, administration, faculty and staff members. Parents are asked to discuss this issue with their children and report to their school’s principal any information you feel we should know.

The administration is working closely with law enforcement. Over the next several days, security will be heightened. School District 308 wants to assure everyone that rumors or threats about school safety concerns are investigated by both administration and law enforcement. Students initiating rumors or threats will be held responsible for their actions.

It is important for us to communicate with parents and staff members the school district’s awareness and initial plans to address these disruptions to our educational system. Please visit our district’s website for updates and contact information.

One worried Oswego East High School parent contacted Patch and said her kids were frightened to go to school tomorrow due to the threat of violence.

She said her children had heard of a bullied student that planned to “get even” with everyone that had bullied him tomorrow, Friday, Dec. 14. 

Patch will update this story as new information becomes available.  

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