Update regarding June 8 VA lockdown investigation, safety conversations

The Niskayuna Police Department on Tuesday announced that an arrest has been made in following their investigation into the threat at Van Antwerp Middle School on Friday, June 8. The school district thanks the police department for its work on that day and for bringing resolution to this matter.

According to the police department, the individual is a student at the school and the case has been referred to family court given the student’s age.

Such an action also carries consequences under the school Code of Conduct. The district does not discuss the specifics of student discipline.

We again commend our students and staff for how they handled a difficult situation on June 8.

While students did exactly what was necessary that day, this may be a good time to remind your child that the things they say or do, in school and elsewhere, can have serious consequences.

We are continuing to evaluate our practices and procedures that day to see what worked and what can be improved in the future.

The first of two public meetings with school leaders to discuss the situation was held last night (Tuesday, June 19). A second session will be held this coming Monday, June 25, from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Van Antwerp auditorium.

At last evening’s meeting, we discussed some of the areas we will be focused on based on what was learned. These include: improving the reunification process between students and families following an incident; anticipating student needs (e.g. medical) ahead of time and having appropriate resources in the classroom; and sharing more information generally about district emergency protocols with all families and students.

We also remain focused on strengthening our training and drills and all aspects of communication.

Thank you to those who attended the meeting and shared their questions and feedback.

There is nothing more important than the safety of students and staff and we are grateful to have such a strong relationship with law enforcement and our community in this regard.