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T.H.R.E.A.T.S. – Torment, Horror, and Revolt Encumbering Administration, Teachers, and Students 


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All students of both BETA and STPA were recently informed about the threats that were directed towards the STPA student body. Since BETA is in a proximity to the STPA campus, the students from our campus also had to take precautions. During the week prior to spring break, BETA students had to follow strict guidelines such as bringing no backpacks and reporting to academic mentoring first thing in the morning. Many students were left wondering, “what really happened?” We asked teachers and students from both campuses to fill in the blanks. 

On March 1st, students from all grade levels separately assembled in the BETA/STPA cafeteria, uncertain about what they were about to hear. They were soon informed by the assistant principal that there was a threat directed towards STPA, our sister school. “Yeah, the way they informed the parents it was a responsible thing to do and that’s the most confident thing that they’ve done all year,” Ife Ajayi, a BETA senior, commented.  As questions and anxiety rose, students were burdened with drastic changes to their school day. “Our schedule was really messed up we had to go to lockers constantly and for every period it was exhausting to carry of things that we needed for our homework at the end of the day,” said Victoria Maldonado, an STPA 8th grader. As teachers began to see the changes affect their students, they soon realized the negative toll this threat took on their students. However, some teachers agree with the new rules put in place, such as Mr. Maani, an STPA 7th grader science teacher.  

 Some of the new rules in place in the STPA campus:  

  1. No backpacks for the rest of the year and potentially next year 
  1. No phones, they are to be collected at the beginning of the day 
  1. Students weren’t allowed to eat outside 
  1. Students had to report to the gym for pickup 
  1. Students had to be escorted everywhere they went, including the restroom 
  1. Students were not allowed to go to the restroom during class time unless escorted 

TEACHER’S FEEDBACK ON ENFORCED RULES 

We interviewed Mr. Nezameddin Maani, a 7th grade science teacher at STPA. Here’s what he thinks about the rules that were in place and the current rules in place: 

“First (and foremost), all teachers had extra duties during their free time, not free time, but during (the) time we don’t have class; we all had extra duties. Everybody was vigilant, male teachers were checking out regularly the male bathrooms, (and) female teachers were checking out regularly the female bathrooms. We concentrated more on the female (bathrooms) because it appears that it was a 7th grader that did this. That’s the closest we have gotten- that it had to be a seventh grader. A girl, a seventh grader girl.” 

SECURITY: BEHIND THE SCENES 

During that week of the expected shooting, students on both campuses were under extreme security measures to protect the students. Some students felt safe on campus while the others disagree with the new rules in place. Here’s some of your fellow students’ opinions: 

 Alexa Casares, Junior class president: 

I mean the security can only do so much. When you have three, four, top security for one school that has a population of 679 I think it is hard to protect each one of the students that attends at the school. I think the security system needs to be more enforced it needs to be updated. So, no matter what incident happens, we have someone to protect all of us.” 

 Daniela Albert, 8th grader at STPA  

“I guess it’s okay for our circumstances, but you never know when something actually (so) major might happen, and that’s when I kind of start to worry because our security guards aren’t (well) trained enough to fight back or something. When the police officers were here, yeah, we felt safe. They were armed with machine guns, but now where it’s just the security guards it’s kind of, well; I don’t know. Another thing that they’re doing now is closing off more exits and making sure there’s certain people looking out to see who comes in and who goes out. They’re being stricter about it than they were before, so I guess that aspect of security is better.” 

WHAT STUDENTS AND TEACHERS FELT THE DAY OF THE THREAT 

According to our interviews, students went through various types of emotions, with each student being different. From being calm and collected to feeling constant anxiety looming over them, the students who attended school that day felt constantly worried. Although, majority of the students from both campuses did not attend school the day of the expected shooting. Here’s some feedback on what students and teachers present on the day of the shooting felt: 

Alexa Casares, Junior Class President: 

“I don’t think you go to school thinking that. I don’t think anyone with that mentality comes to school, and at the end of the day you are walking into a campus where there has been a threat placed and you didn’t know if you were going home on that day, you didn’t know what was going to happen.” 

 “Did you teach the day of the expected shooting?” (-Julia Rodriguez, interviewing STPA English Teacher Luke Bonura, ) 

Luke Bonura, 7th grade ELA teacher at STPA: 

“I did, but it was abbreviated because I only had about 3 to 4 students in each class, so it was very hard to do a whole lesson knowing that everyone else would have to catch up” 

Feedback about the threat:

Ana Perez, BETA Junior and Senior Teacher : 

“Well I was taken aback that there was going to be a shooting. I didn’t think something like that can happen in our campus. I was cautious, and I wanted to take steps to help my students feel more at ease because there were some that were fearful. They really didn’t know what was going on. It was almost like chaos in a way, and it was more of a mental chaos rather than a physical one.” 

Alex Arreola, 7th grader at STPA: 

“Many people are still kind of scared that it might happen at any time.”  

 As the year is wrapping up, students are accompanied with both stress and anxiety about the new situation that has occurred on our sister campus. Hopefully this emotional distress will be nonexistent by the time school commences in the fall. Count on us to keep you updated on this situation throughout the rest of the year! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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T.H.R.E.A.T.S. – Torment, Horror, and Revolt Encumbering Administration, Teachers, and Students