Perceived Threats Keep Some Students Home from School

TUNKHANNOCK -- Perceived threats on social media following last week's school shooting in Parkland, Florida led to some parents keeping their children home following a phone call from a superintendent in Wyoming County.

Tunkhannock Area School District officials met with local law enforcement to devise a response plan after possible threats were made on social media over the weekend.

District officials don't believe there is any imminent threat to staff or students, but because of those threats, the Tunkhannock Area School District Superintendent Heather McPherson left a message on parents' phones Sunday night, saying in part: "The decision to send your child to school tomorrow is yours, but please know that we are making every effort to keep every child safe."

That was enough for some parents to keep their children home from school Monday.

One employee noticed a police presence at the school on Monday. She's also a parent of a student.

"He just feared that being in the middle school this year, that he was scared for what might happen, so I pretty much left the choice up to him as to whether or not he wanted to go or not. He decided that he didn't want to go and I chose to let him stay home for the day," said Kelly Kozlansky.

News of the threats quickly caught the attention of students.

"I think it was a really bad choice for the guy to share what he did on social media. He definitely kind of ruined his life with that. I think it was a safe choice for them to send out the call and tell us that it's our option if we can stay or not," said junior Katie Jo Cadwalader.

One man Newswatch 16 spoke with has a son who just recently graduated from Tunkhannock Area High School. He tells us that he'd be willing to pay more taxes if that meant the school district invested in more security equipment to keep kids safe.

"Our schools are well protected. We do not have the metal detectors like, say, Hazleton does, but if it takes that much effort to protect our kids, do it. I'll pay the tax," Frank Hoefert said.

School district officials were not willing to go on camera or release any attendance figures.