Parents are outraged and demanding a change in leadership within the Susanville School district following an incident at Diamond View Middle School on Wednesday, March 29th.
According to the Susanville Police Department, officers responded to the Diamond View campus around 11 a.m. on a report of a possible firearm on campus, resulting in several units responding. The principal, Dede Heimbigner, informed officers that a student had told other students that they had brought a handgun to school. However, the responding officers searched the student, and no weapon was found. Police Chief Cochran said Officers also searched the entire campus during the investigation, revealing that a handgun was not brought to school, and the student’s comment was taken out of context.
Diamond View parents were not informed of the situation until they were told about it by their children, leaving many feeling that the administration mishandled the incident. Some took to social media to voice their concerns. Principal Heimbigner responded to one such post, stating that what was being spread about a gun being brought to school was based on rumors, asking parents, “Do not spread panic in this community at the expense of our students.” She also urged them to contact her directly with any questions or concerns.
However, some parents expressed their continued lack of trust in the administration, calling on the school to better inform them directly, especially in this situation. A petition has been started, gathering 52 signatures in the last two days, which demands change for Lassen County schools to stop the injustices children have to endure. The petition goes as far as to call for the removal of all teachers, staff, and principals who do not keep kids safe from bullying and all other injustices.
Diamond View Principal Heimbigner and Susanville School District Superintendant Jason Waddell were unavailable for comment.