GREENFIELD — It was a simple tip, via text message, that alerted Greenfield-Central High School administrators that a student was en route to school with a gun.
Thanks to the heads-up message this week and the quick response by G-CHS officials, the 16-year-old student was intercepted before school started and turned over to police before anyone knew what was going on. A potentially dangerous situation was defused.
While G-CHS uses a tip program known as Safe Schools Alert that allows anyone to report concerns involving bullying, intimidation, harassment, weapons or drugs, county administrators admit the call-in systems are rarely used.
Instead, as in the G-CHS incident, a quick message via social media or electronic messages through one-on-one contact brought the issue to light.
“When I was the vice principal at Doe Creek Middle School, we had a tip line, but it was not used a lot,” Southern Hancock safety director Steve Satterly said.
Like Greenfield-Central, officials at Southern Hancock and Eastern Hancock have links for reporting bullying and other tips on their school’s website. But, rather than using the district’s alert system, Satterly said personal communication usually provides the best tips.