JCC launches investigation as video circulatesFree Access

The Jackson County Central School District is investigating an alleged classroom incident involving a student apparently locked in a closet.

The investigation comes on the heels of a video of the alleged incident being circulated on social media this week.

In a statement issued Tuesday, Barry Schmidt, superintendent of schools at JCC, said the incident allegedly took place last month, though the district only became aware of it recently.

“The district is prevented by state and federal privacy laws from discussing the specific details of the incident, or the individuals who may have been involved,” Schmidt said in the statement. “However, we can assure you that immediately upon learning of this incident, the district opened an investigation and placed the individual who was involved in the matter on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation. We continue to work through that investigation and hope to have the matter concluded soon.”

The 55-second video apparently at the center of the investigation shows a classroom closet with two chairs pushed up against the door and a hand reaching out underneath the door. A student approaches the closet but turns around and leaves the frame when a female voice is heard saying, “No, no, no, no, no; uh huh.” Another voice is heard saying, “He’s stuck in the closet.” Knocking from within the closet is audible, followed by a voice saying, “Can I have help?” Laughter is heard, as well as what sounds like a female taking classroom attendance.

In his statement, Schmidt said the health and safety of students is “one of the top priorities of the district,” adding district officials “take these matters seriously.” He asked for patience while the district works through the “appropriate processes,” and also asked the public to “please not share these types of videos or discuss these matters online due to the reputations of the students and staff members who may have been involved in these matters.”

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