December 16, 2021
Dear parents and caregivers,
We have been made aware this evening of a nation-wide challenge circulating on TikTok to threaten gun violence in schools tomorrow, Friday, Dec. 17, 2021. While no specific threats have been made against Perry County School District 32 buildings, teachers or students, we want to be proactive in asking our families to help us prevent someone from making a serious mistake.
Perry County School District 32 will not tolerate any threats of violence made against any member of our school community. Any threat will be taken seriously and will be reported to local law enforcement. The District 32 campus will be on a heightened level of alert tomorrow, with extra supervision and additional presence of law enforcement. Students should not bring backpacks or other bags to school tomorrow, Friday, Dec. 17. (Students should bring Chromebooks to school.)
The safety of students and staff is one of District 32’s highest priorities, and all of us—students, parents, and school employees—have an important role to play in keeping our schools safe. We ask everyone to report any threat on social media or elsewhere, or any suspicious behavior you might encounter, to local law enforcement immediately. Early intervention can prevent a situation from escalating.
It doesn’t matter if it is a joke. It doesn’t matter if it is a prank. Any threat of violence could result in serious disciplinary and legal issues that could damage a student’s future.
We ask parents and caregivers to partner with us to stop these pranks before they happen. Please take a few moments to talk to your children and express the severity of this issue.
We know the impact the past two years have had on the social-emotional health of our students, and that could be an explanation behind the desire for students across the country to participate in these challenges. If your student is struggling, please reach out to their teacher, school counselor, administrator, or one of our local counseling providers.
Thank you for partnering with us and our local law enforcement agencies to keep all of our students, staff and community members healthy, happy and safe.
To report a concern:
Perryville Police Department Perry County Sheriff’s Department
To report an emergency
Perryville Police Department
Cpl. Jeri Cain
RE: Social Media “Challenges”
On Thursday, December 16, 2021 the Perry County School District and Perryville Police Department received an advisory bulletin of a challenge circulating on social media calling for threats of nationwide school shootings on Friday, December 17, 2021.
There is NO CREDIBLE threat to any Perryville school. We want to make the public aware that many of the posts share similar wording or are duplicate posts not relating to verified threats.
Chief Direk Hunt stated, “We take any threat to the safety of students and staff seriously. We will continue to be present in our school zones. In addition, as a precautionary measure we will provide extra patrols at all schools tomorrow. We want to urge everyone in the community to be extra vigilant this time of year, as it is stressful for many and an active shooter situation could occur anywhere. If you see something, say something to the appropriate authorities.”
We are urging students, parents, and community members to report concerns immediately to authorities or to the school instead of sharing any viral posts. Reporting the information to proper authorities will ensure the information gets to someone who can investigate it. Sharing the post on social media does not guarantee it will be received by authorities, and will likely increase anxiety, rumors, and miscommunication.
Again, we want to stress there are NO CREDIBLE threats to any Perryville schools.