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Oxford school board rejects AG’s 2nd offer to investigate deadly shooting

Posted at 11:20 PM, May 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-10 23:20:26-04

OXFORD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) — Oxford Community Schools has rejected a second offer from Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel to conduct a third-party investigation into the November deadly shooting at the high school.

Board members announced the decision during Tuesday night’s board meeting.

Students did not hold back at during the meeting.

“We live through this tragedy, and we lost people we love,” one student said.

Close friends and classmates want to honor the four students who were killed — Hana St. Juliana, Tate Myre, Justin Shilling and Madisyn Baldwin.

They want to remember their lives with a photo memorial.

“Please consider placing their photo on the memorial,” one student asked.

Some school leaders have stated that a photo memorial could be triggering, but most students think otherwise.

"Administrators keep saying that seeing their smiles will be triggering. Yet has it occurred to them that to many of our students, it's just as triggering by not seeing their faces," one student said.

As students stood at the podium one by one making sure their voices are heard, parents raised concerns about the third-party investigation and the lack of transparency.

“This whole meeting has felt like you are covering your (expletive),” one mother said.

Board of Education President Thomas Donnelly responded saying it’s not the right time for a third-party review.

“Given the nature and the breath of the criminal proceedings, the review of the will not occur,” Donnelly said.

He says the board is in talks with four different firms to help create a review that will broke into two parts: A three-year recovery plan and the events that led to Nov. 30.

Related: Oxford school leaders criticized for 'limited' third-party review after mass shooting

Donnelly says the third-party review is more than just investigating the events of the shooting.

“It would be ill advised for us to start a third-party review when we don’t know the facts,” Donnelly said.

He went on to deny Nessel’s second offer.

Donnelly said at this time “we will be declining the attorney general’s offer to conduct a third-party review.”

Parent in the room don’t understand the board's decision.

“Why are we paying someone when the attorney general does this?” one parent asked.

A full statement from the school board can be found on the district's website.