Caledonia Secondary School sent letters to parents on Sunday, Oct. 27 to notify them of a YouTube video posted by a student late Saturday night containing “worrisome” content.
The letter written by principal Keith Axelson stated the school worked in cooperation with outside agencies and school district officials to investigate the incident, and are “taking appropriate action to ensure safety for students and staff.”
“We are confident that students and staff are safe, and that appropriate measures are, and will be taken to ensure that our school remains safe,” the letter reads.
Following reports of the video, Janet Meyer, acting superintendent, wrote the district immediately activiated their multi-disiplinary Violence Threat Risk Assessment process, which involves police and other key community partners including provincial training company Safer Schools Together.
“The threat was assessed and steps were immediately taken to address the concern and ensure appropriate supports were in place for all concerned,” Meyer wrote.
“I want to assure you that all staff and students are safe. We take every precaution to ensure the safety of our students and staff and we take any reported act of violence very seriously. Police continue to work closely with us as we respond to this incident.”
Since posting, the video has been taken down, but was viewed and discussed by students on social media. Because the video was posted by a minor, the school district and school administration cannot comment on the video’s content.
“The individual in question was provided with immediate support and will have on-going support from this point forward,” Meyers says.
Caledonia Secondary remained open Monday morning, Oct. 28 once it was determined there was no risk to staff or students, Meyers says.
The incident was to be addressed with students on Monday morning as well to “reassure them the school is taking this situation very seriously and is doing everything necessary to ensure their safety,” according to the press release.
Speaking in a general sense, Meyers says students who are diagnosed as depressed or in need of mental health supports can access help in the community and at the school level to help with strategies relating to those challenges.
School officials also say parents should ask their children to refrain posting or sharing information about the video on social media to prevent rumours or exaggerations of what happened.
The district has asked parents and guardians of Caledonia students to contact the school administration for any further questions.