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Message to Harrisburg 3 Family

Harrisburg 3 Family,

I took this from a fellow Superintendent and altered it a little to fit our situation.


To say that this is an unsettling time would be an understatement. Parents, grandparents, teachers, bus drivers, students, everyone in our nation is unsettled due to the recent school, church and related tragedies. Additionally, to think that I or any one person or group of people have an answer that completely fixes this problem is naive, or foolish at best. However, collectively we can no doubt work towards better understandings and solutions that will enhance the many prevention and protection practices that we have in place.

Our priority is to continue to make school an environment in which we are caring for, nurturing, and ensuring the success of students. That mission has not changed and will not change. It will always have different nuances as we move forward. We are always in a time of changing nuances and some of those times are more uncomfortable than others, but regardless of the comfort I know that everyone will step up to the challenge and not be deterred.

On a frequent basis we address comments, words, social media posts, and various other actions used by our students. It is part of raising boys and girls to be young men and young women. We have had a few instances the last couple of days in the district. This is not an uncommon occurrence and is always taken seriously. As is our practice, we interviewed those students, and after those assessments, IF needed, we then involve the local law enforcement and determine if these threats are tangible. These situations, thank goodness, were not deemed to be tangible, but were still taken serious and protocol followed.

Again, everyone is on heightened alert and for good reason. With this heightened sensitivity that everyone is feeling we also want to be cautious about our actions and words. I would ask that everyone be diligent to help address any comments that are being made. It is easy to react based on incomplete or inaccurate information, but at the same time we don't want to underact and miss a potential threat. We clearly take all of these events very seriously and it seems to be most difficult to find the fine line in balancing everything from discussions about possible vulnerabilities around schools to truly substantiated threats.

Please know you can always call my office and I will give you any information I can. However, when there is an ongoing investigation we do not put out any information as to not compromise the investigation. Then when and if we find the threat to NOT be tangible, we do not put out any information as to avoid any undue hysteria. We will always take these issues serious, but sometimes they are not a threat or problem at all. Thank goodness that is what we have dealt with twice this week. Would there have been any real danger we would have contacted parents immediately. These situations were not and why there was no messages sent home.

I also would encourage all of you to call when people who have NO facts about anything at the school decide they want to create a scenario for whatever reason. While I may not be able to give you certain information depending on the status of the investigation....I can always let you know if you are being told or are reading NONSENSE and NON-FACTUAL information......which I was told was out there today. We will always strive to keep your kids safety as our main concern when these issues arise.


Thank You

Mike Gauch