Viral Threats of Violence Place Some Southern Tier School Districts on Heightened Security
Many Southern Tier schools are heightening police presence after viral violence threats targeted December 17 as a day of school shootings and bombings nationwide.
A viral threat of shootings and bombing set to take place at every school in the United States is making its way around TikTok and Southern Tier area police and school officials are responding.
In the posts on TikTok, the challenge labels Friday as "National Shoot Up Your School Day." Some of the TikTok posts are encouraging students to make a threat of violence against their school while other posts are encouraging students to stay home on Friday, December 17, 2021.
School districts around the Southern Tier have been reaching out to parents and posting statements on district websites to let staff, students, and parents know that they are aware of the threats posted on TikTok and that they have heard of the trend which references possible school shootings or bombings.
While it doesn't appear that any of the threats are viable, law enforcement and school officials say they will be leaning on the side of caution and school districts across the United States are either canceling classes for December 17, or they are bringing in more police presence.
Parents in the Maine-Endwell School District received a message from the school stating that the district is aware of the national school violence threat that has been circulating around TikTok and that the district is "taking preventative measures and will have increased police presence." Additionally, Superintendent Jason Van Fossen said in a statement on the website for the district, "Ensuring that Maine-Endwell buildings are a safe place for our students and staff to learn and grow will remain the top priority."
Union- Endicott School District Superintendent Nicole Wolfe addressed the issue on the district's website saying, “While these threats DO NOT target Union-Endicott, we are working with local law enforcement to take preventative measures to bolster safety around our buildings."
Harpursville School District encourages "staff, students, and parents/guardians" to be diligent in making "a report to law enforcement immediately if they are aware of any specific threats or witness any suspicious activity."
Broome County Sherrif Harder released a statement on the department's Facebook page saying that "The Broome County Sheriff’s Office has found no link to local schools and no evidence this threat is credible."