About the Investigation

An Important Note From Guidepost

The independent investigation is underway. To maintain the independence and integrity of the investigation, neither the board nor the district administration is engaged in the investigation. Please direct all questions about the investigation to the investigative team.

If you have relevant information to share or if you would like to communicate with someone on the investigative team, please contact the team at [email protected].

About the Independent Investigation

The Oxford Community Schools Board has initiated an independent investigation into the events surrounding the November 30 shooting.

The purpose is to learn what led up to this tragedy, what happened immediately prior to and on the day of the shooting, and exactly how the school responded that day and in the days that followed.

To ensure the integrity of the investigation, the board selected an independent team that is highly experienced in conducting sensitive investigations of a similar nature.

The team at Guidepost Solutions, in partnership with Varnum Law, brings global experience working with K12 and higher educational institutions, nonprofits, Fortune 500 companies, government agencies and others on similar investigations.

The district has made all relevant materials and information available to the investigative team.

Interviews began the week of July 25. Throughout the process the team will employ proven investigative and interview techniques that create a safe, non-threatening environment for individuals to share relevant information.

The investigative report will be an unbiased reflection of the team’s findings and will include actionable recommendations related to those findings. Guidepost will share the report with the community at the same time it’s shared with the board and school administration.

Of course, independent investigations like these take time. With that said, the investigation team will conduct and complete their work with deliberate care and speed.

Scope of the Investigation

Review and Evaluation

Investigation team members have familiarized themselves with the Oxford Community Schools District, including its administration, the five primary schools, one middle school, one high school, two alternative schools, and the early learning school.

The team is now engaging in an extensive review and evaluation of the following. As the investigation proceeds, the team may identify additional areas for review and evaluation.

School policies, procedures and practices in place at the time of the shooting.

The team is reviewing relevant school policies, procedures and practices in place at the time of the shooting and evaluating whether they satisfy laws, regulations and best practices.

Some of the areas under review include:

  • School physical security
  • School resource officers
  • School training/drills
  • School emergency communications
  • Measures to identify, assess and address student behavior indicating a potential propensity toward school violence
  • Social media monitoring
  • External engagement with student families, child protection services, social services, law enforcement, etc.
  • Searching students, student lockers and student bags
  • School and school district practice with any previous incidents or threats of violence
  • Student behavioral/mental health resources
Review the shooter’s history and evaluate what school officials knew about the shooter before the shooting.
Evaluate whether school staff followed training and whether their actions satisfied applicable laws, regulations, and best practices in response to the shooter’s behavior before the shooting.
Review actions and evaluate whether school staff, school resource officers, and students followed school active shooter policies, procedures, and training during the shooting.
Review and assess school security measures and the school emergency communications system during the shooting.
Review and assess the support the school and school district provided to students, staff and families following the shooting.
Post-shooting security review and assessment, including an evaluation of security improvements and adoption of best practices.

Recommendations and Report

Over the course of the investigation, the team will make recommendations to the school district if and when they identify areas for immediate action.

At the conclusion of the investigation, the team will provide the Oxford Community Schools Board of
Directors and district administration with a comprehensive report of its findings and its full set of recommendations based on those findings.

The full report will be made public simultaneous with delivery to the board and district administration.

Investigation News & Updates