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Duluth Father Banned from Laura MacArthur School

Posted at: 01/11/2013 6:39 PM
Updated at: 01/11/2013 11:01 PM
By: Travis Dill
tdill@wdio.com

A Duluth father said he complained to administration at his son's school about bullying. An hour later he was banned from school grounds.

The father, Andrew DeVisme said he spoke to school staff about the bullying against his child on Wednesday. He said an hour after he got home a police officer knocked on his door and told him the he was banned from school grounds.

“They said, 'We are here on behalf of Laura MacArthur.' They said that your son is not enrolled there anymore and you are not allowed on the premises or you are to be arrested,” DeVisme said.

He said that police visit came after a meeting he had with a vice principal and other staff members. DeVisme said he told them his son, Anthony, is the victim of bullying.

DeVisme said only one thing in those conversations could have prompted banning him from school.

“I mentioned the school shooting in Sandy Hook, and I was concerned about my son's safety due to that. And that's why I was there to get my son. Next thing I know I'm being told I threatened to shoot up my son's school,” DeVisme said.

On Friday, the district released a statement stating, “Staff at Laura MacArthur Elementary recently dealt with an individual who became angry and inferred that a shooting might happen at the school. Per the school's crisis response plan police were notified.”

The district also denies expelling or removing any students from the head start program.

DeVisme said he's frustrated by a lack of communication from the district, but he said he did have a tense phone call with one school official.

“I didn't think that conversation was going to go too far so I hung up,” DeVisme said.

DeVisme said he's waiting for an answer, but after this, he's not sure if he wants Anthony to return to Laura MacArthur.

The Duluth Police confirmed that they did visit DeVisme on behalf of the district, and that he is banned from school grounds for the time being.

Citing Data Practices statutes, the school district said it is not able to respond to any questions about the situation.