On Dec. 6, a student at Knox Elementary School told other students he had a knife and hatchet with him at school, but did not show them the items, said Cherokee School District spokeswoman Barbara Jacoby.
“Two students reported to a teacher that the student in question told them he had the items,” Jacoby said Friday. “This information was immediately reported to the administration. When questioned by administration, the student in question produced the items.”
School administrators confirmed the student had brought the two prohibited items to school, she said.
“It was a small hatchet with a blade cover, such as a Boy Scout would use when camping. He had both items in his book bag,” Jacoby said.
Principal Tammy Sandell sent a letter home with students Monday, explaining what happened at the school and urging parents to remind their children that weapons are “explicitly prohibited at school.”
“Please know that the administration of Knox Elementary School takes the safety and security of our students and staff very seriously. Following the disclosure to an administrator that this incident had occurred, staff acted immediately by taking emergency measures and confiscating the items,” Sandell wrote. “Even though this student did not threaten anyone, this student now faces severe administrative measures as a result of bringing these items to school.”
Though specific disciplinary measures can’t be disclosed, Jacoby said that an example of a “severe administrative measure” would be something like out-of-school suspension.
In line with standard policy, the Cherokee County School District’s Police Department is investigating the event, Jacoby said.
The student who brought the items to school did not threaten anyone, and Jacoby said the school handled the situation correctly.
Jacoby said the student’s parents were notified “immediately after the student showed administration the items.”
“The staff, administration and CCSD Police Department followed all proper protocols and took appropriate action,” Jacoby said.
Sandell finished her letter to parents by asking them to help teach their children to “share any concerns about their safety” with teachers or other adults at school.
“Knox Elementary School is a very strong school and we cannot allow this type of incident to diminish the efforts of everyone involved in making it a high-achieving school,” Sandell wrote.