Four students at Frontier Junior High School in Graham have been suspended for spreading an inflammatory text message about a teacher.
Bethel School District spokeswoman Krista Carlson said school officials became aware of the texts Oct. 15. She said the texts identified the teacher and warned “Don’t let this man near you.” and “He will rape you.”
Carlson said a school investigation determined that four girls were involved – two who originated the message and two who forwarded it to others.
All the students were originally suspended for five days, Carlson said. But suspensions for the two girls held responsible for originating the message were later extended for the rest of the semester.
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She said the longer suspensions were appropriate because the district deemed the message to fall under several categories, including bullying, intimidation and defamation.
Carlson said rumors about the teacher’s conduct had been investigated in the past, but were not found to be credible.
She said one of the girls told school officials that the teacher had not done anything to make her feel uncomfortable.
“If she was trying to convey a concern, she could have reported it to a teacher or administrator,” Carlson said.