Schools address threat rumors


The Princeton Schools are safe and not in danger of being victims of a rumored act of violence.

That’s the word from Superintendent Richard Lahn, responding to reports that an act of violence is planned Friday at one of the school district buildings.

Anxiety stemming from last Friday’s school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. and the impending Mayan calendar date marking the end of the world may have led to the rumors of violence, school district officials said.

“They’re rumors…gossip, and nothing has been substantiated,” Lahn said.

Lahn met Wednesday morning with building principals, his administrative team, Police Chief Brian Payne and the school liaison officers. The team took the rumored acts of violence very seriously but at the same time found no basis to believe there is an impending threat.

Below is the text of a letter Lahn drafted to parents and community members that addresses today’s events:


December 19,2012

Dear Parents and Community Members:

The recent events in Newtown, CT have left us all saddened and confused. Our thoughts and prayers remain with the victims, their families and the entire community of Newtown.

It is natural that events like these heighten awareness in all of us. Modern day social media can sensationalize rumors, spreading fear and anxiety across any community.

You may be aware that we are currently experiencing such rumor spreading in our schools and community. Specifically, a rumor has circulated regarding upcoming acts of violence in our schools.

Some important facts to remember:

Our school district has worked in coordination with local law enforcement to determine this is rumor spreading and nothing more.

Our school district has worked in coordination with local law enforcement to ensure appropriate security measures are in place in each building.

We will continue our normal school routine each and every day.

We employ two full-time, uniformed police officers that maintain a presence in our schools each day.

The Princeton Public Schools continue to be a safe place for students to receive their education.

As a community, we all play a part in keeping our schools safe. I ask that each of us deliver a calm and reassuring message to our children, neighbors and friends. By working together, we can keep Princeton a safe place for everyone.


Richard T. Lahn Superintendent of Schools

Committed to Excellence!