Niskayuna High lockdown discussed at heated meeting
NISKAYUNA, N.Y. (WRGB) - "The kids were peeing in the garbage can!"
That's what parents and students in Niskayuna say some children were forced to do in their classrooms Monday, when the High School was put on lockdown for almost 6 hours.
Superintendent Cosimo Tangorra says, it was unfortunate, but it was in the interest of safety.
"Prolonged lockdowns create extreme inconveniences and we do everything we can to keep the kids as safe as possible,” Tangorra said.
Hundreds had the chance to express their concern about the lockdown at a public meeting Wednesday.
"I felt like it was excessive,” one mother said.
Police say they were investigating a written note threatening to shoot up the school and naming a specific target.
They would not say if the target was a student or adult, but they did say that person was notified.
Both the Superintendent and the Deputy Police Chief say the length of the lockdown was necessary to complete the investigation.
"It's going to take as long as it takes and I'm actually quite unapologetic about it. We want to make sure every child is safe," Tangorra said.
"Student safety is number one in my world. Who I anger is collateral damage,” said Deputy Police Chief Michael Stevens.
But while parents were able to have their voices heard, several students at the meeting say they feel they weren't given the same opportunity.
"I wanted more student involvement instead of just all the adults talking because the adults don't know exactly how it felt. They weren't there when it happened,” said Catie Lasek, a student.
"Students who wanted to talk like adults were shut up. I think that was inappropriate,” a parent said.
School officials say they do have outlets available for students to be heard.
They also say they are working on plans to have a more dignified way for students to relieve themselves during any potential future lockdown scenarios.