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Grissom Middle School students suspended over ‘hit list’ naming other students

Published: Oct. 13, 2021 at 5:45 PM EDT
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MISHAWAKA, Ind. (WNDU) - Several Grissom Middle School students are suspended after making a list with names of other kids they didn’t like and plans to hurt or kill them.

Grissom’s principal sent a letter to parents last night detailing the incident.

16 News Now tell us how administrators are responding in order to keep other students safe.

The letter parents received last night shows administrators took this matter seriously and didn’t waste any time suspending the students involved.

Principal Jean Milfort issued this letter to Grissom Middle School parents the same day they say a staff member discovered a group chat listing students by name and plans to harm or even kill them.

He said he immediately contacted the PHM Safety & Security Director to work with him and other staff members on investigating these threats he deemed substantive.

Police have since taken over the investigation and are looking into the credibility of the threats.

“It is not an all-school threat. Parents should know that sending their kids to school is safe and is fine. This was one group issuing a threat to another group,” said PHM Safety & Security Director Mike Seger.

The letter continues on to read, “All parents/guardians of students involved have been contacted by the school administration. The students have been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation.”

A staff member found out about the chat using Hapara, a resource teachers use to keep students on task by monitoring what’s on their Chromebooks.

“In this case, a staff member was mirroring a student to see that this student was on task and happened to notice that there was some Google Chat going on and became aware of some concerning information,” Seger said.

Even though the students behind the threats aren’t in the building, their actions can still have an emotional impact on those targeted.

Seger says there are two counselors at Grissom with whom students can set up appointments and talk about what they’re feeling.

He says there are also several mental health resources for students on both sides of this situation, and even staff, through their social-emotional learning woven into their curriculum.

“The social-emotional learning is built into our curriculum, and there are a great deal of resources available to our students as well as staff through our social emotional learning program,” Seger said.

You can follow this link to learn more about available resources through their social-emotional learning program.

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