EDMOND — Sequoyah Middle School parents were notified Tuesday that a support employee spoke of suicide and harm to others after school on Monday.
Edmond Public Schools administrators have taken and will continue to take steps to handle the matter, according to the letter signed by Jason Galloway, Sequoyah Middle School principal.
Classes continued as usual Tuesday at the school at 1125 E Danforth Road, said Edmond district spokeswoman Susan Parks-Schlepp.
The employee, who was not identified, was not at the school Tuesday.
The man was at the school when he called a 211 suicide help line before 5 p.m. Tuesday and said he was having thoughts of harming himself and others, said Jennifer Monroe, Edmond police spokeswoman.
Police trained in mental health went to the school to assist the employee, who was then questioned in a classroom, the letter stated. The employee was taken to a facility for a mental health evaluation.
“The employee was alone when the crisis call was made and at no time did the employee come into contact with students after placing the call,” Galloway wrote. “The employee did not have a weapon.”
Classes were over for the day, but 40 to 50 student athletes were on the school property, officials said.
At the time of the incident, Galloway wrote, a coach gave a directive to some student athletes to stay out of the building because of a gas leak, but there was no gas leak.
“The coach's intent was to provide a response that would limit additional inquiry from students so that police could quickly and effectively assist the employee,” Galloway wrote. “We are sorry for any confusion this may have caused. We assure you that the care and safety of your children is a top priority.”
Eight officers went to the school once police were notified about the statements, Monroe said.
“Each shift within the police department has mental health-trained officers working,” Monroe said. “We receive mental health/check the welfare calls almost every single day and these officers are very valuable to our department, this city and these families involved in the crisis at the time.
“They are usually the first one to make contact with the person in distress and work diligently to assess the needs and find the appropriate help.”
Contributing: Staff Writer Robert Medley