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Disciplinary decisions forthcoming for students involved in altercations at Niagara Falls High School

Niagara Falls City School District

All quiet for the first three days of this week at Niagara Falls High School, a stark difference from last week where several fights led to the superintendent suspensions of 21 students.

The students are now going through hearings to state their cases for what happened last week.

School Superintendent Mark Laurrie said with kids getting back to school on a full-time basis, this year the reintroduction to a classroom setting can cause friction.

Thomas O'Neil-White
NFCSD Superintendent Mark Laurrie speaks with reporters Sept. 16, 2021, about recent altercations at the high school.

“A huge shift in being out and coming in and not having that familiarity with 2,000 people around,” he said. “That's one thing. It's like we're retraining everyone to get together and be together again. Secondly, and through the course of anecdotal stories, it's clear that these issues that occurred with the young ladies were brewing in the community. These were not out of the ordinary, just happenstance circumstances.”

In addition to beefing up security this week, local community organizations Niagara Falls Peacemakers, the NAACP and others are walking hallways and providing mentorship to students— acts Laurrie said are helping to keep the peace.

Laurrie will review the reports Friday, but did not say when he would render a decision on the suspended students. He did make it clear, however, the importance for students to be back in the classroom as soon as possible.

Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Thomas moved to Western New York at the age of 14. A graduate of Buffalo State College, he majored in Communications Studies and was part of the sports staff for WBNY. When not following his beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats and Boston Red Sox, Thomas enjoys coaching youth basketball, reading Tolkien novels and seeing live music.