Chief Michael P. Murphy
150 Park St.
North Reading, MA 01864
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018
Contact: John Guilfoil
North Reading Authorities Respond after Concerning Social Media Posts and Comments by High School Student
No Danger to Schools or Community
NORTH READING — Police Chief Michael P. Murphy and Superintendent of Schools Jon Bernard report to the residents of North Reading that actions have been taken after the North Reading High School administration learned that a student allegedly made a statement deemed to be one of concern for compromising school safety and similar messages of concern were posted on social media.
There is no danger to the North Reading Public School District or the greater community.
The student in question was identified, and appropriate actions have been taken, consistent with the code of conduct as outlined in the handbook that governs North Reading High School. The North Reading Police Department has conducted an investigation, led by Detective Sean O’Leary, and working with school administrators. A determination was made that the statement and social media postings, while troubling, do not rise to the level of criminal charges; however, the school district is addressing the matter in accordance with district policy.
The student’s name cannot be released for legal reasons.
On Tuesday, February 6, 2018, North Reading High School administrators were made aware of statements allegedly made by a high school student that indicated a desire to harm others at the school. Through the course of the investigation similarly concerning postings were found on social media. School administrators, consistent with the policies and procedures that have been adopted to ensure a safe school environment and response to threats, took prompt action including identifying the student involved and meeting with the student and the student’s family.
“The safety and security of students is one of our utmost priorities, and we are grateful for the strong working relationship that exists between the North Reading Police Department and our public schools,” Chief Murphy said.
Added Superintendent Bernard: “I am pleased to know that our school safety and security policies and procedures work and that they were followed by faculty, staff, and administrators. I am thankful to the North Reading Police department, the students and staff of our middle school and high school, and the community at large for their patience and support as we work to resolve this matter of concern and maintain a safe and secure learning environment for all.”
The North Reading Public Schools and North Reading Police Department wish to thank everyone for their patience and support.