It's been one week since a 12-year-old boy at Kiley Middle School died of an apparent drowning during a school gym class.
Springfield School Superintendent Daniel Warwick released a statement Friday morning reading in part:
"Sadly, today marks one week since the unspeakable tragedy occurred where we lost one of our students. As a school district, we are doing all that we can in the aftermath of such a tragedy. We have reached out to the family. We have made counseling available. We have suspended all pool-related activities at all of our schools for the time being. And we have begun reviewing the events leading up to this tragedy with the purpose of conducting a full review to determine exactly what occurred."
The sixth-grader's identity is not being released at this time.
Many questions at this point surrounding the tragedy remain unanswered. To that, Warwick says:
"As superintendent, I assure you I am just as desperate to learn the answers to those questions and based on those answers to make thoughtful determinations about what must occur next. I promise that those decisions will be made with one thing and one thing only in mind – what is best for all of our students in moving forward. The fact of this matter is that this process will require time. We need time to fully investigate, making sure that every aspect is covered and that we can be confident in our process once it is complete."
Warwick says he will not divulge details of the investigation at this point because he does not want to jeopardize the integrity of the investigation. Though, he says he will personally share the findings and courses of actions that result once they are determined.
The school department is currently conducting an investigation of the incident as is the Hampden County District Attorney's office.
District Attorney Mark Mastroianni says the investigation is expected to take months.
"What we look at is if there is any negligence or recklessness that rises to a criminal level which contributed to or caused the death," said Mastroianni.
Warwick says the Springfield Department of Public Health and Human Services worked with the state department this week to conduct an inspection of the school's pool.
He also says that the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has been contacted and that Kiley Middle School was operating within the guidelines for swimming curriculums.
Students have been on vacation since the tragedy, but they will be returning to school on Monday. There will be grief councilors available for students and teachers when school resumes.
On Monday Springfield City Council President James Ferrera says he will announce the formation of a School Safety Committee.
Copyright 2013 WSHM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Monday, March 10 2014 5:09 PM EDT2014-03-10 21:09:31 GMT
Photo courtesy of The New Yorker
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