Report all threats to help keep school safe

School shootings have become incredibly prevalent in society. It has become customary to see new shootings and threats on the news. According to Education Week, there have been 47 school shootings that resulted in death or injuries in 2022 alone. Thirty-six people have died due to school shootings this year, and 96 people were injured. In October, the St. Louis community was impacted when one student and one staff member were shot at Central Visual and Performing Arts High School.

The threats and shooting themselves always seem so distant, so detached from the community here. In every instance, the same mantra is repeated: “I never knew it could happen here.” However, this situation recently reached the Rockwood community when Marquette received a bomb threat, then a gun threat the subsequent day. Although the threats have been handled, their impacts are still prevalent in the Rockwood community, especially for every Marquette student and staff member made aware of the horrifying threats. It’s obvious, but it has to be said: school shootings are no laughing matter, and neither are the accompanying threats. They aren’t a joke or prank to pull with friends. They are unbelievably serious. Students who make these threats will face significant consequences, potentially even criminal charges. According to Jay Greenberg, the FBI agent in charge of St Louis’s field office, sending out a false threat has the potential for a five-year prison sentence.

In addition to legal problems, the threats cause immense trauma to students, staff, and families. The impacts and reverberations of the messages have long-lasting impacts, and will likely take their toll. But, if these threats are sent out and received, the severity of these events must be understood and taken seriously. Any students who view a threat can report them to the school directly, or utilize Missouri Highway Patrol’s app Courage2Report The threat should be reported promptly, and students should avoid spreading rumors and misinformation about the threat on social media. This can cause additional chaos, and make it more difficult to identify and deal with the initial threat. It is essential that all threats are reported to keep the school safe, no matter if one is friends with the person who made the threat. Oftentimes students have approached these threats with the mindset of snitching involved, but rather, students would be helping keep the community safe from potential dangers.

The Talon believes that students must take these threats seriously and report any suspicious activity immediately because doing so could potentially save lives.