An Open Letter Regarding Recent School Threats
Schools across Hamilton are facing an increased number of threats, both inside schools and online.
This must stop. Threats against schools bring serious criminal and school consequences. Threats abuse police and school board resources. Every threat causes anxiety for students, staff and caregivers.
We implore families to talk with their children about the seriousness of making violent threats. We will not hesitate to pursue consequences, which may involve criminal charges, as well as suspension or expulsion from school. We notify school communities of school threats.
The safety of students and staff is our top priority. HWDSB reports every school threat to Hamilton Police Service. We support police in their investigations into school threats. We take seriously every threat of violence against a school community and will help hold perpetrators accountable.
Each threat is unique and may result in actions that differ from case to case. For example, a school closure may be warranted after one threat due to additional information that makes the threat more likely to occur. We do not take these decisions lightly.
Threats cause anxiety and concerns about safety. To support your child, caregivers can reference tips for adults supporting children and youth after distressing events. You can learn more about Mental Health and Well-Being supports at HWDSB online at hwdsb.info/HWDSBWeHelp.
Students can also support their well-being or report information anonymously, through HWDSB Helps.
- Text 905-963-0066. Standard rates apply.
- Download the HWDSB Helps app for iOS and Android.
- Access the anonymous web chat (hwdsb.info/webchat-help)
Staff can also access Employee Wellness and Support resources using the staff intranet.
If you or your child are aware of a threat, immediately contact police at (905) 546-4925 and inform your school principal. You can anonymously share information about threats with Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at http://www.crimestoppershamilton.com.
Thank you for your understanding and support.
Dawn Danko, Chair of the Board
Sue Dunlop, Interim Director of Education