Penalty Lessened For Students Who Threaten Violence

Students who make threats of violence on educational property in Johnston County could face fewer days in suspension under a policy change adopted by the Johnston County School Board.

Under the old policy, a student faced a mandatory 365 day suspension unless the Superintendent recommended an alternative program such as enrollment in a safe school.

The new policy lowers the minimum suspension from 365 days to only 10 days but at the discretion of the Superintendent offenders could still face long term suspension.

Depending on the seriousness of the violation, if the student is 14 or older they could be expelled from Johnston County Schools.

Mass violence is considered any means of communication to any person, school or school office making a report that an act of mass violence is going to occur.  Several students were arrested during the 2016-17 school year for making threats against their schools.  Due to confidentiality laws, school officials can not disclose the lengths of punishment the students received.

Crystal Kimpson Roberts, Chief of Communication and Engagement, said the change is designed to give principals the ability to determine what measures can be taken on an individual basis.