A threat of deadly violence will close Middletown High School today, prematurely ending the school year.
A student tip about a possibly deadly threat appeared serious enough to cancel classes for the high school on what was to be the last day of the school year, Middletown School officials told this news outlet Tuesday.
Superintendent Marlon Styles Jr. declined to reveal the nature of the threat but said Middletown Police, which provides officers in the city school district, was immediately notified and is now investigating the threat to determine who is responsible.
“The threat is specific enough that we believe the safest option for our students and staff is to close the high school (Wednesday),” Styles said.
The threat does not change tonight’s scheduled Middletown High School graduation ceremony at Barnitz Stadium, he said, adding that extra police protection will be in place for ceremony.
All other Middletown schools will hold final day classes and activities today as planned.
“Our School Resource Police Officers (SRO) and staff reviewed videotapes and interviewed students and staff. The Butler County School Safety Director and Emergency Management Agency (EMA) are using their resources to scan social media. At Middletown City Schools, we take all threats seriously and we will press charges,” Styles said.
“We have been shown a sign of violence and we will act to keep our schools safe for all students and staff. We are encouraging parents to talk with their sons and daughters and report anything they might know (about the threat) to the Middletown Police Dispatch at 513-425-7700. That call will be kept confidential. As always, the safety and security of our students and staff is our number one priority,” he said.
“While we are saddened this is happening on the eve of our graduation celebration, we must keep our Middie family safe. We will have an increased police presence at graduation. Our focus tonight is celebrating our seniors and their successes,” Styles said.