Wakefield High School in Arlington, Virginia, canceled classes Friday after a tumultuous week that brought police to the school twice — once for an apparent fatal student overdose and again for a suspected trespasser.
Parents are planning a silent march at the school at noon Friday to support students and teachers after the two shocking incidents.
On Thursday, police swept the campus for a possible armed trespasser on school property. The school was on lockdown from 12:30 p.m. until dismissal. No one was hurt and police didn't find anyone.
On Tuesday morning, a student was found unconscious in the bathroom, suffering from a suspected overdose. That student was taken to the hospital in critical condition.
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During an Arlington School Board meeting Thursday night, PTSA president Judith Davis claimed that the student passed away. Arlington police confirmed the teen's death on Friday morning.
Davis blames a lack of leadership and action for what happened Tuesday and Thursday.
“Where’s the accountability for what happened? Do better. Stop celebrating yourself and talk to the community, talk to parents, talk to students,” she said.
During the same meeting, Superintendent Francisco Duran thanked first responders for the quick responses and said these situations are not something teachers are trained to deal with.
“We do everything we can to ensure, first and foremost, that they’re safe. But we have to pause and recognize that this is a crisis for us in our community, and it’s a crisis that we’re seeing nationally growing more and more,” Duran said.
Duran said there is Naloxone — an anti-overdose medication sold under the brand name Narcan — is available in every school, but he wants more training so teachers and staff can support emergency responses.
Wakefield High School will be open Friday to students who want meals or counseling services.