FLINT TWP. – Growing tension in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Newtown, Conn. last week has prompted all Genesee County schools to close two days before the start of Christmas break.
All Genesee County School Districts – including Carman-Ainsworth schools — are closed Dec. 20-21, according to a message sent out by the Genesee Intermediate School District,
The letter, written by the GISD, on behalf of all the Genesee County superintendents said:
“It is clear that last Friday changed all of us. As educators, we acknowledge, and we believe our communities would agree, that schools are at the center of concern right now. As school district Superintendents we have been in constant communication with one another and there are too many unique factors that have influenced our unanimous decision to cancel school and all school activities for Thursday, December 20 and Friday, December 21.
“Our communities are anxious, parents are concerned about the safety of their children, there are rumors that have multiplied as a result of social media, and there are threats within local districts that bring pause as to whether conducting classes would be appropriate. We have discussed information from local law enforcement, the realities of being able to investigate every threat, information related to district sensitivities, and our concerns about whether a normal instructional day could be achieved.
“Our conclusion is that canceling school is the appropriate thing to do.”
There were no specific threats in Carman-Ainsworth schools, however there was a series of incidents in Grand Blanc schools Wednesday, one of which involved a student who allegedly wrote his or her parent a text message claiming there were shots being fired at Grand Blanc High School.
That message proved to be a hoax, but caused several tense moments for parents and authorities. The district said it is taking appropriate action against the student responsible.
Grand Blanc is also the focus of a rumored “revolt” by students planned over social networking sites which is to coincide with the much discussed Dec. 21 “doomsday” prophecy linked to the ancient Mayan civilization.
It is not known if these incidents in Grand Blanc had any bearing on the decision to close schools countywide.
Students in Carman-Ainsworth schools will return to school Jan. 2.