Update: Southold schools notifies parents of ‘serious matter’

05/25/2012 5:40 PM |

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | A 12-year-old Southold student has been suspended for producing a "kill list."

A seventh grade student has been suspended from Southold School after he allegedly recorded a list of names of fellow students he wanted to kill, according to a parent who says her son found his name on the list.

Laura Pace said her son, Noah, a fellow seventh grader, reported the list on Tuesday afternoon to a coach at the school, who then notified administrators.

Responding to e-mailed questions from The Suffolk Times Friday, Southold superintendent David Gamberg sent the following statement, which was also posted on the district website following news reports:

“Upon becoming aware of this potentially criminal matter, the district contacted Southold Police Department for assistance and we continue to work with them in their investigation of the student’s alleged actions. The student has been suspended and faces a Superintendent’s hearing that may result in further disciplinary action. This is a serious matter, as the safety of our students and staff is our utmost priority.”

Southold Police Chief Martin Flatley said police assisted school officials Tuesday in transporting a 12-year-old student for medical evaluation.

Ms. Pace,  who said the “kill list” was accompanied with graphic drawings, said she met with S0uthold principal William Galati on Thursday over concerns that the district did not notify parents of the situation. She said she only learned of the incident after her son told her about it Wednesday, one day after he learned of the alleged list.

“I get an email if he forgets his gym clothes,” she said. “Is this not as important as a snowstorm?”

Ms. Pace said she will not allow her son to return to school until after she knows the other student will not be allowed back.

“I don’t feel safe with my kid there,” she said. “They have no security and they haven’t done anything to ensure that my kid and others are safe.”

Chief Flatley said he was confident the school is safe and that parents should not hold their students out.

“We’ve been working hard with school officials to make sure the school is a safe environment, which I firmly believe it is,” Chief Flatley said. “Parents should feel safe to send their children to the school.”

Chief Flatley said no arrest or charges have been made. He declined to provide any other details.

Additional reporting by Jennifer Gustavson

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