Threats Lead to Closure


Grace VandeRyt

Students taking cover for lockdown

Grace VandeRyt, Reporter

In January, EHS experienced four threats, one of them being during school hours causing a lockdown and another caused a day off school. There are consequences to these threats, and these events have affected students and staff greatly. 

Mr Geygan, EHS principal, is mostly concerned with protecting students and staff.  “My main feeling is student and staff safety,” says Geygan. The school has to take certain precautions during these events to keep everyone safe. “My first rule is always to call the superintendent and notify him of the situation. We work with our school resource officer, Molly, and we develop a plan and bring all the administrators in here and we work through a system of making sure what we know about a possible threat, and how to keep staff and students safe.” 

The teachers also have the responsibility of keeping students safe. History teacher, Mr.Sullivan, has strong feelings about the recent issue with threats. “I think there were 3 distinct viewpoints. There was the teacher’s viewpoint which was a little bit nervous and a little irritated. I wanna make sure we are all safe. The irritated part comes with the fact that within minutes we found out that it was taken from stock images,” says Sullivan. On the other hand, math teacher, Mr.Williams, thinks these events have brought the school and community together. “As much as it causes anxiety, at the same time I feel like we come together. We all realize we are in this together,” Williams stated. Speaking up is a huge part of solving this problem. English teacher, Ms Mclelland hopes students can feel like they can speak up, since teachers can’t see what is posted online. “As teachers and administrators, we are removed from what students post online. Therefore we just need to remember that Edgewood has the safety tip line ‘Stay safe, Speak up’ that they can report things too,” said Mclelland. 

Some students have different opinions on the current threat situation. Freshman Mackenzie Allen, was feeling anxious and worried in the moment of the lockdown. “At first I was a little thrown off just because you’re in the middle of the school day and usually when there’s threats they are like before the day or after school. So I was like okay it might be a little serious but then once it started to get a little quiet I felt less afraid,” says Mackenzie. The recurrence of this problem is starting to affect students more. Freshman, Zoe Becker, is concerned for our school and what could happen. “I definitely think that it makes me worried about how edgewood is turning out. I’ve been to Edgewood my entire life and nothing as serious as this has ever really happened and that its recurring kinda concerns me,” said Zoe. Unfortunately, some kids find that this is a reason kids don’t want to come to school anymore. Junior, Reyhan Davis, feels like people are scared to come to school now. “The school to some kids is a safe place for them, the school doesn’t feel as a safe place anymore,” Reyhan explains. 

  Some things students don’t understand are the consequences of these actions.Punishment for these types of actions are not just within the school, There could be even more serious consequences. Principal Geygan says, “If it was a school student, we would take it all the way to expulsion.” There are also legal consequences. If a person makes a threat to harm a school, they can be charged with making terroristic threats and inducing panic, making both of these charges felonies of the 3rd degree. If someone the age of 18 made a threat, and found guilty of these charges they would be sentenced from 9 to 36 months in jail/prison and $10,000 fine, they could also be ordered to pay or reimburse all of the cost to the state, municipal, or county law enforcement agencies that handled the investigation and prosecution of the case. If the person making the threats is a juvenile ( under 18 years of age) they will be charged as a ‘delinquent child.’ They will still use the same criminal sections as an adult. The penalties for a juvenile for one felony of the third degree is a maximum of six months up to their 21st Birthday to be served at the Ohio Department of Youth Services. The juvenile could also have to pay fines and make reimbursements if ordered to do so by the courts. 

Threats are scary and can be harmful to the community. The safety of the students and staff is always the number one priority. These threats have been a hard thing for the community to overcome, but EHS is constantly trying to prevent these events and continue to grow as a community.