Officials say student made threats against classmates at Pershing Middle School

SDUSD police will be on campus Tuesday

SAN DIEGO - School officials said there will be increased police presence at Pershing Middle School in San Carlos after a student reportedly made threats against classmates.

San Diego Unified School District Jack Brandais confirmed that threats were made by a student last week.

Brandais would not go into the nature of the threats, but said the student has been removed from the school.

Authorities are investigating reports that the accused student made a "list" targeting specific students.

Josh, who did not want his last name used, told 10News said his son was targeted.

"My son's name was on the list," he said. "It was basically a death threat ... You immediately fear for your child's safety."

Alysia Lowe told 10News she has a new phone number and was not aware of what happened. Her daughter, Yamauni, explained it before heading off to class.

"It's kind of scary. I'm not exactly sure what happened," Yamauni said. "I'm kind of going to keep my eye out on things and just make sure nothing happens."

"It's hard to trust that our schools now can take care of them like you would," Alysia Lowe said through tears.

Josh said he was grateful for the school's prompt reaction and the help of the school's police officers, but he still cannot help but worry.

"You drop your son off, hope and pray that your child is going to be safe when you drop him off at school," he explained.

"It makes me just want to take her back home," Lowe said. "That's scary. It's scary to think you can't protect them."

A notice about the threat was sent out parents last week and again on Monday.

The investigation is ongoing, but school officials said that the district's crisis response team will be on hand Tuesday to provide counseling if needed.

San Diego Unified School District Police will also be on campus Tuesday.

Below is the letter that was sent to parents:

Dear Parent/Guardian:

At Pershing Middle School, our first priority is to provide a safe learning environment for your children. We also believe in keeping our school community informed about incidents that occur on campus.

I want you to know that yesterday, Wednesday, Feb. 13, students reported to me that a classmate was threatening a number of students. The allegations have been investigated, the threatened students and parents/guardians notified, and the threatening student no longer attends Pershing.

At this time, an investigation is being conducted our San Diego Unified School District Police Department. Because of laws that protect student privacy, I cannot release any additional information about the student, the incident or the investigation.

We take great pride in the fact that students came forward to tell us about the problem. Parents, students and the community are valued partners in helping us keep our campus safe, secure and focused on learning. Please encourage your child to report any suspicious activity and issues of concern immediately to the school office. Reports can also be made anonymously to Students Speaking Out at (888) 580-8477, or studentsspeakingout.org/.

Please be assured that we are working with all of the appropriate authorities to ensure the safety of our students. If you have particular concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

Sincerely,

Susan Levy
Principal

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