Last week, we shared a communication with families regarding a threat that was issued by an RCS High School student. It was brought to our attention that a student who was not originally involved in the initial threat made a threatening statement to a small group of students. While referencing the threat from earlier in the week, the student said, “I should make a list of my own.” Although District officials were notified of this after school hours yesterday, Tuesday, June 14, the comment was made during the school day last week. To our knowledge, no list was created. An update will be sent to all families if additional information becomes available.
The Albany County Sheriff's Office is actively involved and has investigated. RCS has taken appropriate disciplinary action per our Code of Conduct, and all affected families have been contacted by the District. We cannot legally share the names of any students involved or specific details about the situation as they pertain to the students involved.
It is imperative that our children understand the consequences of their words and actions. One mistake, one “joking” comment in person, in writing, or on social media, that is threatening against one or more persons, may change the course of our children’s lives. It may result in criminal charges. Governor Hochul recently signed into law Penal Law, Part 3, Title N, Section 240.78, which specifically prohibits the crimes of making a threat of mass harm and aggravated threat of mass harm. The legal repercussions of issuing threats may be extremely serious, and such actions will not be taken lightly by the District or law enforcement. Please speak to your students about these expectations and the law.
The RCS High School will bring together its crisis response team (CRT) to discuss how we can continue to best support our staff, students, and families. Our social workers, psychologists, and counselors are available for any student or staff member who needs someone to speak with. Please remind your student(s) that if they see or hear anything suspicious, concerning, or questionable, including, but not limited to, specific threats or suspicious activity, they should immediately report these concerns to a trusted adult, administration, and/or law enforcement.
The District is thankful the matter was reported and that its law enforcement partners assist in these investigations.
Superintendent of Schools