More parents of students at Abraham Lincoln High School in Council Bluffs have shared concerns with The Iowa Standard after our story from Friday. The Iowa Standard has been provided with many posts from social media as well as new video.
Multiple parents said their children said they were locked in the cafeteria. One student posted the following on social media:
“Walkout at 10:30 today, the school administration has tried to strip our First Amendment rights, they have denied to inform all students of the threats made towards the school, and they have confined and virtually imprisoned us. The conditions in which we learn are unacceptable. Join us on the track to demonstrate our disapproval of the administration.”
Another post from another student says students were locked in the cafeteria.
“I had to walk through the riot in the commons. I love feeling unsafe at school.”
That same student then said a member of the school’s administration “pushed a kid away from the door. The administrators are blocking all the doors. I legit feel 0% safe.”
A different student said nobody discussed what happened inside the school after the walkout. This student said they were basically “rioting” and students were locked in the cafeteria and had to be escorted if they wanted to use the restroom.
“No one is discussing this and they’re just saying it was ‘peaceful’ but each student that goes to AL knows it was nothing but the complete opposite.”
Yet another parent took issue with how the school characterized what happened after the walkout last week.
“The school district and local newspaper seriously downplayed what happened here. When our oldest came home that day his story was NOTHING like what the school district told us. This is unacceptable, other parents in CBCSD please talk your children, when the school says ‘it wasn’t an issue’ ask your kids what happened.”
Council Bluffs Abraham Lincoln also had to deal with a social media threat that prompted the following message from principal Bridgette Bellows:
“We have had a few parents and students report a potential threat at school tomorrow. We are trying to track down the source of the social media post but do not at all believe that it is anything more than a rumor. Having said that, we will take extra security measures tomorrow and are working with Council Bluffs Police Department to ensure the safety of all. Please do your best to stop the rumors and as always, let us know if you have concerns. Students will be excused from school if they or parents are concerned about their safety. Thank you for all that you are doing to ensure that students are learning in the best possible environments. I know the last few days have not been easy.”
A parent told The Iowa Standard they received this robo call while everything was taking place and she was talking with her daughter:
“We wanted parents to know that there was a planned walkout today of fewer than 100 students. Students were exercising their right to voice their opinions on the use of restrooms by transgender students. School administration, with support from school resource officers, were present to ensure everything was peaceful. As students returned inside, a small group gathered in the commons to continue their demonstration. While it was disruptive, all students were safe and are now in class or lunch. Mrs. Bellows, Principal.”
In another video posted on social media, it shows students and a man who appears to be a school employee telling students to move along.
“Let’s close those doors, let’s keep them in the cafeteria,” he said.
The person taking the video tells that person he’s recording crimes being committed. Then it appears another student approaches the person taking the video and tells him to put the phone away using expletives. He then threatens to punch the person in the face, all while using profanities.
Staff tells the student taking the video they are closing the commons down and he needs to go the cafeteria.
It is reported that school officials had the student taking the video go into the same cafeteria as the student who they acknowledge they heard threaten to punch him in the (expletive) face.