Niskayuna parents lead heated debate over recent school lockdowns


As more details emerge about recent threats at Niskayuna schools, hundreds of parents, students and staff gathered Wednesday evening for a public safety forum to address the problems and offer input and solutions.

First, parents suggested adding armed school resource officers. School officials said they are considering the idea, but don’t like the idea of guns in the schools.

Many parents and students argued the lockdown on Monday was poorly handled, claiming students were forced to urinate in garbage cans, a byproduct of high school students stuck on lockdown for five hours.

But officials say there are no plans for improving the lockdown procedure.

“No plan has been presented to me to do anything different than what was done,” said Niskayuna School Superintendent Cosimo Tangorra Jr.

Many parents complained about the lack of communication during the lockdown.

“Every time a door slammed they thought it was a gunshot, said one parent. “My daughter is texting me, ‘dad I love you.’ She’s texting her little brother, ‘I love you.’ She never says that, folks.”

The meeting became heated when several students demanded to address those in attendance but were stopped by school officials.

“We feel like we don’t have a voice and that’s them proving we don’t get a say,” said one student afterward.

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