NPPS District News

North Platte Public Schools students and families,

We want to inform you of a concerning new national social media trend and provide you with reminders of our process and information on how you can help us keep schools safe.

We were alerted of a national social media trend of individuals posting they “heard rumors” of planned violence taking place at schools across the nation on Friday, December 17. In North Platte, law enforcement has not seen any specific reports targeting our schools. North Platte Public Schools Administration and School Resource Officers (SRO) continue to work closely with local, state, and national law enforcement, monitoring and thoroughly investigating any reports or concerns.

In the interest of creating the safest environment possible for all our students and staff, North Platte Public Schools has worked with national experts to develop our guidelines and protocols for threat assessment: a planned, proactive, and strategic response to reported issues of concern in the school district – with a focus on prevention. We encourage everyone to report any concerning behavior that raises suspicion or concern to a staff member at your student’s school, the North Platte Police (308) 535-6789, or through the Safe Schools Hotline 866-286-7233.

All comments regarding school violence are taken seriously, even those made “as a joke.” Each report is investigated thoroughly, and students can face school and legal consequences for making threatening comments or statements online or in person.

Families and students, here are some important reminders:
• Please continue to report any threats of violence to school officials or law enforcement. We will investigate each and every one and take each of them seriously. If you see a threat on social media, record as much information as you safely can about who posted it, username, time, date, and social media platform.
• We urge adults and students to stop the dangerous trend of passing on threats via social media (example: posting screenshots from unknown sources or posting “I heard rumors about”). It only slows down the investigation process by using law enforcement’s time chasing the numerous posts. The best thing to do is immediately alert authorities and not share it with others through social media or text messaging. Please be aware, if someone reposts or passes on the threat, they too can also be held responsible for issuing a threat and can receive disciplinary or legal action as a result.
• We encourage students to think before they post on social media: Are we being safe, respectful, and responsible citizens? You're part of the community, don't stir up trouble, be a force for good. In other words, think critically, behave safely and participate responsibly.
• Even though you think you might be posting something privately, everything online can be shared and is public. Screenshots of “private” social media posts are shared often.
• Threats of violence - even those meant as a joke - will be taken seriously and investigated thoroughly. Anyone who posts about violence could face legal consequences.
• Students, tell a trusted adult immediately if you see something on social media that concerns you. That might be a parent, family member, counselor, teacher or administrator, or law enforcement. 

We understand there is currently a heightened awareness of threats - both on social media and in the public conversation. This can cause anxiety and stress for students. Here is a resource for families to help their child process what they are feeling. If you need additional support for your child, please do not hesitate to contact us at school.

Please know that all of our schools work closely with the North Platte Public Schools Administration and School Resource Officers (SRO) and local, state, and national law enforcement each and every day to ensure school safety. Schools should be a safe place for every student and staff member, and this is one of our top priorities. We as a community need to work together to limit the disruptions - allowing our students to focus on learning and our teachers to focus on teaching. If you or your child hears or sees anything of concern, we encourage you to report it immediately to any school staff member, the North Platte Police (308) 535-6789, or through the Safe Schools Hotline at 866-286-7233. 

School safety takes a community, thank you for partnering with us!
Tina Smith
NPPS, Director of Communications
Office of the Superintendent