LISD Superintendent: Unloaded BB gun found on campus last week, but student had no intent to harm anyone
By Miles Smith
Superintendent Susan Bohn with the Lockhart school district clarified on Thursday that while no guns were found during an investigation that occurred this week following a pair of reports about concerns of students making threats at Lockhart High School, an unloaded BB gun had been confiscated last week.
“The parents of the few students who saw the BB gun were contacted directly by the LHS administration, and it was handled as an individual student disciplinary matter since BB guns are prohibited on campus,” Bohn said in a letter addressed to parents and guardians.
Bohn said the investigation by LHS administrators and the Lockhart Police Department had revealed there was no ammunition, no threat and no intent to harm.
BB guns and pocket knives are prohibited on LISD campuses.
Bohn said the district had not notified parents of the incident because they didn’t want to create “unnecessary panic” when no actual threat was present.
“I recognize that some of you may feel that the district should tell you when an unloaded BB gun is on campus, even when there is no danger associated with it. I can understand that feeling at this time,” Bohn wrote. “Our job is to make sure students and staff are safe and also minimize disruptions to the learning environment so that they are not unnecessarily panicked when there is absolutely no danger. We have seen today how unnecessary panic can disrupt the day for our students, and it does not positively contribute to the stability that our staff works so hard to maintain for their health and well-being.
“Please be assured that, when there is credible, confirmed concern related to the safety and security of our students or staff in any of our facilities, we will (1) follow the appropriate response protocol in an effort to keep everyone safe and (2) provide notice to our students, staff, and parents.”
The letter sent home punctuates a week that’s included two reports pertaining to concerns about students making threats and a walkout at Lockhart Junior High School, where students staged a protest similar to those that have been going on nationwide in the wake of last week’s tragedy in Parkland, Florida, where 17 people were killed at a high school. A 19-year-old former student was arrested in the shooting.
Bohn said she understood that parents’ and students’ fears about similar situations happening in their hometown were naturally heightened and invited parents to reach out to her directly.
“I want to share with you how appreciative I am of our administrators, teachers, staff, and parents who, despite the upset, fear, and grief that last week’s terrible tragedy has caused, continue to work to support our students and reassure them that we are working together to keep them safe,” Bohn said. “Thanks also to those of you who have shared suggestions and asked questions in a productive way. As always, feel free to contact me directly with your concerns at Susan.Bohn@lockhart.txed.net.”