Arrests of students accused of school threats is on the rise this school year, as is the number of parents keeping their kids home for safety reasons, KHOU 11 Investigates found.
An analysis of three school years’ worth of data showed a spike in students charged with terroristic threat for threatening violence on the entire school.
This school year, six students have been jailed for threatening a high school in Harris County. That’s more than double the last two school years combined.
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Those charges only include students who are 17 and older and charged in Harris County District Court. Juvenile cases are confidential.
Among the cases filed this school year was one in February against Sam Rayburn High School in Pasadena.
A Snapchat threatened to shoot, “up Rayburn with the gang tomorrow till all y’all scream and cry” prompted the arrest of an 18-year-old student from a rival school.
According to court documents, the threat included a photo of him holding an AR-15 assault-style rifle, which he was ordered surrender to police as a condition of bail.
The day of the threat, parents rushed to school to pick up their kids.
"It's pretty scary, especially with everything going on nowadays," one dad told KHOU. "Yeah, a lot of kids are reaching out for attention, making threats, but you don't know if it's serious or not. I'm not taking a chance with my son."
Many other parents chose to keep their students home because of threats, which also spiked this year, according to Texas Education Agency records.
Pasadena ISD had to notify the Texas Education Agency that attendance dropped that day. The district is among eight districts in TEA’s Houston Region had to do the same thing this year.
In total, Houston-area districts reported 12 low attendance days this school year. That’s compared to two days last school year and seven in the 2015-16 school year.
It’s too soon for those numbers to include low-attendance days in the aftermath of the Santa Fe shooting, so the total could rise.
Low attendance days because of safety
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|La Porte ISD||0||0||1||1|
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