District 153 Superintendent Scott McAlister shared with parents that a James Hart student on Tuesday had flashed around what appeared to be a gun. It is believed the gun was a BB gun.
The incident was reported to Homewood police about 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 16, but conflicting information led them to believe the incident was not real. The student didn’t share the information with school staff, but police notified school administrators after the student came to the police department.
On Wednesday, school administrators questioned both the student who reported the incident and the student who was alleged to have brought the “gun” to school, as well as other students who were said to be witnesses. Again, conflicting information did not lead to any conclusions, according to information McAlister shared with parents on Wednesday.
As the school day went on, “other students came forward to report having seen this student with a gun in various places. It is our belief that the gun in question was a BB gun,” the superintendent said.
“Regardless, it will be treated with the highest level of seriousness per the guidelines in our handbook,” he added.
“Weapons are NEVER OK on school grounds,” McAlister stressed. He encouraged students, parents and community members to be alert to their surroundings and report incidences that could cause harm.
“We count on students to report things they see and hear — this is essential for everyone’s safety,” he said.