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Jeannette investigates report of weapon on bus

| Friday, May 20, 2016, 11:00 p.m.

Jeannette police and school district officials are investigating an incident Tuesday in which an elementary student carried a weapon onto a school bus.

School officials sent parents a letter Thursday saying that no students were threatened with the weapon.

Matthew Hutcheson, superintendent, released the letter but would not comment on the incident.

“The district is taking the necessary steps to review this situation in an effort to address concerns. As part of a continuing investigation the district has learned that the weapon was not seen during the school day,” the letter said.

“The district is grateful to those students who reported information to the administration so that a thorough review can be taken regarding this situation,” the letter said. “The district maintains every effort to work with law enforcement to ensure that the safety of students is maintained.”

Attempts to reach city police Chief Shannon Binda for comment Friday were unsuccessful. Hutcheson declined to disclose what type of weapon was involved.

He wouldn't say what type of disciplinary action may be taken against the student. However, the 2015-16 school handbook indicates the student could face suspension or expulsion, depending on the severity of the incident as determined by school officials.

“A student is prohibited from transporting or possessing any object that can be considered a weapon or look-alike weapon on school grounds. In accordance with Act 26 of 1995, any ‘knife, cutting instrument, cutting tool, nunchuk sticks, firearm, or other instrument capable of doing bodily injury' will constitute a weapon under this section,” the handbook states.

“Violators will be suspended for 10 days and may be scheduled for a full suspension hearing before the board and possible exclusion (expulsion).”

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