Parents of Davey Elementary students are not happy about how they didn't learn of a school shooting threat until nearly a week after it happened.
According to Kent police, Rachel A. Gauntner issued the violent threat on Jan. 31 while airing criticisms to a teacher about the level of education her special needs son was receiving.
The teacher and another eyewitness reported Gauntner even referenced the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, said Kent Police Lt. Jim Prusha.
The teacher waited until the next morning (Feb. 1) to report the threat, saying she wanted to check with the school’s administration on how to proceed.
The Davey Parent Teacher Organization held a meeting Wednesday night to discuss the threat and the district's response. A Patch reporter was denied access to the meeting.
Parents took to social media to share their frustrations with the district's lack of communication about the incident, many saying they didn't know until it was reported in the news Wednesday.
Take our poll: How do you think the school district should have handled the threat?
One parent shared with Kent Patch an email she sent to Superintendent Joseph Giancola about how the district handled the incident:
"At the top of my mind is how can you have chosen not to notify parents and take actions to cancel school until the threat was investigated and the school grounds deemed to be safe?" the parent wrote. "We have received countless phone calls from you on safety topics that were the result of misunderstandings, yet on this direct verbal threat to teachers and students on school grounds — you remained silent."
Here are a few things other readers said about the situation:
- Amanda Cubbison: "I find it amazing that my son goes to that school and was never informed of the threat until just now by your posting." Cubbison wrote that in response to a post on Kent Patch's Facebook page informing parents of the threat.
- Peter Heroux: "I agree that this is not how I want to find out about any news of this nature," Heroux wrote in response to Cubbison's post. "I want to know about this immediately after it happens."
- Pat: "I am amazed that Kent City Schools have not already trained their teachers on how to handle threats."