OXFORD, Mich. – Parents and students within the community are calling for an independent expert review of the school’s current student safety plan. Oxford High School
is asking for a determination of whether it was and is being properly followed. They are also calling for a new transparent process that uses student input to create an updated school safety plan for the 2022-2023 school year. Change 4 Oxford
This comes after shooting on Nov. 30, 2021 that left four students dead and seven people were injured, including a teacher. A 15-year-old student and his parents are facing several charges in connection with the shooting.
“Oxford has failed the student body in keeping us safe.
Everyday I pray that whatever conversation I have with my friends or anyone else isn’t my last with them or the last one I ever have. Everyday I pray that I won’t die on the high school floor because of the lack of caring that they have shown.
I hate waking up certain days cause of the anxiety and stress, the lack of safety and the thought of that gets me sometimes in class and I can’t focus. I don’t care about school most of the time because I’m concerned for me and the students’ and teachers’ safety and lives. Even something as simple as closing a door too loud or a kid running to class can set me off for the rest of the day.
The school acts like It never happened and they do this by not adding the bare minimum of what would make students feel safe.”
Oxford Student Griffen Jones Read: Suspected Oxford High School shooter denied transfer to Children’s Village, will remain in jail of the discussion. Click here to view a recording Parents and students are seeking the following actions from the school board: Immediately hire a new independent school safety expert, such as the University of Michigan’s National Center for School Safety, to review Oxford’s student safety procedures and how they were followed in 2021, and to make recommendations for the next school year. Parents and students must be included in this decision. Immediately start a PUBLIC and TRANSPARENT update of Oxford’s school safety plans in which parents and students can offer input. Changes, which include more consistent access to mental health services, are necessary to restore a sense of safety next year that ends learning loss and allows students to resume their education. Implement an updated school safety plan PRIOR to the start of the 2022-2023 school year which can bring real #change4oxford while serving as a guide for all other schools. Read: More Oxford High School news coverage
“We are here for the four families that have lost. The additional families that have been injured and hurt. And all of the children of Oxford. We are here to speak for our children in this community. Too many Oxford students are struggling with learning due to continued worries about safety procedures in Oxford schools, leading to learning loss and unaddressed mental health issues. Our children are smuggling to find help.
Notices of investigations of new threats and rumors are devoid of details on process or findings. No one knows if Oxford’s safety procedures are proper and what updates are required so that day can never happen again for us as well as other schools across the country. Things must change before the new year.
Oxford’s experience must be a catalyst for change for all other schools in the nation.”
Oxford Parent Mike Aldred
“It has been 5 months since our community suffered this horrific tragedy. To date, we are still looking not only for answers, as to what was lacking in our schools safety policies, but an amended plan for moving forward, so we can be pro-active in the safety and well being of both students and staff.
These kids need our help. They need to feel we really hear them and value their input. Daily, these students need to be picked up from school because they do not feel safe. Daily, there are medical issues, as well as many students who don’t feel comfortable using restrooms or even eat lunch in a cafeteria. All of these issues prevent learning from occurring, as students can not focus, when they’re constantly worried for their safety.
It has been made clear by the county prosecutor that there is no conflict of interest in conducting a transparent review of Oxford Schools current safety policy. It is imperative that the Oxford School Board give us the independent transparent review, that they promised to us immediately, as well as an updated school safety plan and code of conduct prior to the start of the 2022-2023 school year.
Students need hope that next school year can be productive, but that will not happen, unless the Oxford School Board immediately starts a public process to review and update Oxford Schools’ safety procedure.”
Oxford Parent Jeff Jones
“Our school board promised to hire a 3rd party to complete an investigation into what happened leading up to and on November 30th. In December they stated it would be done as quickly as possible. In February they shifted, stating they can’t do the investigation as soon as they thought because the prosecutor would not allow them to as it would affect justice in the criminal trials.
Shortly after that the prosecutor issued a statement explaining they advised the school’s attorneys their office is not asking anyone to delay those efforts. Then the school board shifted again, now saying they will not do an investigation until all trials are completed. They even let us know the reason during a school board meeting is because they feel it will bankrupt the school district.
To be clear, they already confirmed they set aside the money to pay for the investigation, so the cost is not what would cause a bankruptcy, so what else could this mean?
We feel the answer is clear, the school board knows an investigation will show the mistakes the administration and board made leading up to November 30th and rather than identifying the security breakdowns and policy holes that need to be corrected to ensure our students, teachers and staff are safe, they would rather protect themselves. In other words, Oxford’s board of education is more concerned with protecting themselves than protecting our children.”
Oxford Parent Lori Bourgeau
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