Dear RSU1 Community,
Today, February 16, 2018, the situation described below occurred at Bath Middle School (BMS). This information was shared with BMS families, students, and staff once the situation was resolved. It is important that the information also be shared with the RSU1 community in an effort to dissuade rumors that often occur after such a situation, provide transparency about our emergency procedures, and offer supports to students and families.
“When the BMS buses were already on the road this morning, we received information that a student had seen information on social media about a possible threat to students and staff at BMS. The school immediately went into working lockdown while the Bath Police Department investigated the situation. Police presence was increased at the school as well.
It was determined that the information received was not a threat to BMS at all. Rather, it was related to the concerns at Mt. Ararat that were reported yesterday and found to be inaccurate. Again, this threat had nothing to do with Bath students or BMS.
One hour after we first heard this information, the Bath police recommended that we conclude our working lockdown and resume a normal school day. The Bath police will continue to monitor the situation and our school throughout the day.
The news from Florida of yet another school shooting heightens our fears and anxiety about the safety of children everywhere, including here at BMS. No school system can take the risk of assuming it could never happen here. In our school, student safety and emergency response has been one of our highest priorities.
Information on social media is often inaccurate or speculative. Nevertheless, we take any and all reports very seriously and cooperate fully with our local law enforcement agencies to keep all students and staff safe.”
As stated in the above message to BMS families, the safety and security of staff and students is paramount. Every school in RSU1 has an emergency plan, and every school practices that plan. Our emergency plans have been developed with Bath Emergency Services personnel.
Attached is a PDF from the National Association of School Psychologists that may be helpful if you need to talk with your child about school violence. Two additional websites are also provided below. While not endorsing any of these organizations, they are given in hopes they can be helpful to you.
Students who know information firsthand should report it. Please make certain your child is responsible in their use of social media, knowing that inaccurate information makes ensuring student safety even more difficult. If you or your child have a concern, please be certain that it is reported right away to RSU1 staff and law enforcement. We take all of this information seriously and will follow up immediately.
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network at: http://www.nctsn.org/sites/default/files/assets/pdfs/talking_to_children_about_the_shooting.pdf
American Psychological Association at: http://www.apa.org/topics/violence/school-shooting.aspx