Holmen HS takes precautions after concerning social media messages

Published On: Dec 19 2012 06:43:51 PM CST   Updated On: Dec 19 2012 06:59:37 PM CST
HOLMEN, WIS. -

Holmen administrators and staff are reassuring parents and students Wednesday night after some disturbing Facebook and Twitter messages were posted earlier this week.

The messages concern a student threatening to bring a gun to school.

The school administration is calling this situation the "perfect storm."

With the devastating shooting in Connecticut less than a week ago, the end of the Mayan calendar on Friday and the band "Guns at School" playing in La Crosse also on Friday, school officials said they're doing everything they can to ensure Friday will be just another normal school day.

“Between the police and ourselves, we have seen what's been posted on Facebook and there has been no threats posted on Facebook, and no evidence of this being done in any way,” said Bob Baer, Holmen High School principal.

School administrators said they started becoming concerned when several students and parents reported seeing messages on social media about a student threatening to bring a gun to school during Friday's holiday assembly.

“My initial reaction was, ‘where are these kids getting the information from,’ and ‘how are we going to deal with it?’”

Baer and the district's administrator, Dale Carlson said they have no concrete evidence, for example a student saying they actually heard this particular individual discuss his plans or have written proof this particular student wrote the messages, but it’s a situation the district's administrator isn't taking lightly.

“We're giving it our full attention,” said Carlson. “The social media issue is not new to us, what students may say and what students may comment on, and so we investigate thoroughly any resources we may have, (and) we have students that may help.”

School officials are also working directly with the particular student at the heart of the concern.

There will also be an increased presence of law enforcement and staff at the school on Friday to ensure safety as a priority.

“This has been an important week for our students and Friday will be too,” said Carlson. “So school will be in session, and we have a safe place at our high school, and then we'll look for a well-deserved holiday break for our students.”

Carlson said as of right now, this particular student is not in attendance at the school and will not be for the remainder of the week.

The school district asks anyone with concerns to contact Holmen High School’s principal by phone (608) 526-3372 or email baebob@holmen.k12.wi.us.