LAUSD Shutdown May Have Cost The District $29 Million
LAUSD students are back at school after yesterday's district-wide shutdown, a move that may have cost the district $29 million.
Over 640,000 students had the day off yesterday when LAUSD closed all campuses due to an emailed threat—which can be read in its entirely here—later revealed to be "non-credible." Schools reopened today with increased police presence after authorities deemed all campuses safe, KTLA repots. The decision could cost LAUSD $29 million in funding because of the loss of average daily attendance, according to California Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson. However, Torlakson said, "We're nearly 100 percent certain that we can take the steps to restore those funds to the district."
L.A. officials have been defensive of their decision, in particular LAPD Chief Charlie Beck.
"When parents make their determination about the decisions that were made today," Beck said yesterday, "I would ask them to look at it this way: If you knew what the superintendent and the school board knew at 5:30 this morning, when the decision had to be made, would you have sent your child to school?"
Representative Adam Schiff (D-CA), who is a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said that the emailed had been deemed a "hoax or something designed to disrupt school districts in large cities." Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, however, shied away from using the word.
"Some have used words that I think are inappropriate like 'hoax' and other things," Garcetti said. "Whether it's criminal mischief, whether it's somebody testing vulnerabilities of multiple cities, we still do not know enough to say definitively."
The threat was emailed to a school board member Monday night using an email host called 'Cockmail,' and indicated that the writer was a Muslim student who had been bullied by his peers. The writer said he and his 32 jihadist friends had already placed explosives and would be using guns to kill students.
A similar email threatened schools in New York, only this time, the writer had over 100 jihadist friends. New York officials deems the threat a hoax early on and decided not to close the schools. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said, "[The email was] was so generic, so outlandish, and posed to numerous school systems simultaneously. Kids should be in school today. We will be vigilant. But we are absolutely convinced our schools are safe." NYC Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said the email was likely written by someone who'd watched too much Homeland. Bratton also noted that "Allah" was not capitalized in the email.