Westfield Authorities Release Details About Incidents at Edison Intermediate, Announce Plans to Increase Police Presence at All Town Schools

The person who made the social media post that resulted in an evacuation of Edison School Wednesday has been identified, according to authorities. Credits: Jackie Lieberman

WESTFIELD, NJ — The following is a joint statement by Mayor Shelley Brindle and Westfield Board of Education President Gretchan Ohlig:

This week, Superintendent Margaret Dolan, Business Administrator Dana Sullivan, Board of Education President Gretchan Ohlig, Mayor Shelley Brindle, Town Administrator Jim Gildea and Police Chief David Wayman met once again to discuss school security issues and, specifically, to address the recent incidents that have occurred at Edison Intermediate School over the past week.  To alleviate concerns about the nature of these incidents, we have asked Chief Wayman to release the following additional information:

On Wednesday, February 21, a 9-1-1 call was received during which the caller stated they were being physically harmed and then immediately hung up. A short time later, it was determined that the call was initiated from the area of Edison Intermediate School, prompting the police to go to EIS and advise the principal of what had occurred.  The school district initially implemented a lockdown, and then it was determined to initiate a “shelter in place” in an attempt to locate the person in distress and determine if they were in need of medical attention.  During the “shelter in place,” normal classroom activities resumed.  Once the caller was identified and it was determined that no threat was present, the "shelter in place" was lifted.  As school officials address this administratively, a police investigation is continuing.

Sign Up for E-News

On Wednesday, February 28, Westfield police received a report of a potential unspecified social media threat against Edison Intermediate School and the administration. This report was brought to the attention of the principal and it was determined to evacuate the school until the police confirmed that no threats were present. Once confirmed, the school was repopulated and normal school activities resumed. The individual who made the social media posting was identified and is being addressed administratively by school officials and a police investigation is continuing.

On Thursday, March 1, a student at Edison Intermediate School reported to the school administration that a possible threat against the school was written in a restroom. The police were notified, and after meeting with the principal and investigating the vandalism, it was determined that the threat was not credible. An investigation is currently underway to identify the vandal.

It is important to emphasize that, while the uncertainty around these events can be concerning, at no time was the safety of any students or faculty compromised.

To reassure parents and students, beginning next week and continuing through the end of the school year, the town will be increasing police presence at each of the schools throughout the day. The presence will consist primarily of patrol car presence, with a police officer on foot as warranted. The board of education and town will discuss what permanent police measures can be implemented when the new school year begins in September.

Additionally, the BOE and town are working on establishing consistent communication protocols between the police, the school district and the public for any future incidents that will better inform parents about the nature and severity of a threat as soon as it is determined, without compromising the safety and security of students or any ongoing investigations.

This is certainly a remarkable time with respect to school security requiring unprecedented cooperation between the town and the board of education. It is always difficult to assess the most effective way to communicate in a crisis when the top priority is the safety of our students and staff. We will continue to work together and learn from every incident.  

Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any comments or questions.

Thank you.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


NJ Flags to Fly at Half-Staff for Jerry Green May 7

April 24, 2018

TRENTON, NJ — Governor Phil Murphy issued an executive order on Monday for New Jersey flags to be flown at half-staff at all state buildings and facilities on the day of the upcoming General Assembly session, scheduled for May 7, in memory of Assemblyman Jerry Green, former chair of the Union County Democratic Committee, who died last week.

On Thursday, Governor Murphy had said, ...

Thank you, Mayor Brindle and Six Members of Town Council, for Approving 2018 Budget

April 25, 2018

Thank you, Mayor Brindle, and the six members of council, who voted to approve the 2018 budget last night and to Mr. Gildea, Councilwoman Habgood and the finance committee members who worked tirelessly to prepare it. Thank you for the lowest tax increase I can recall while producing a budget that provides for smart investment in our town. 

For most of my residency here, the same ...

Upcoming Events


Thu, April 26, 10:00 AM

Westfield Memorial Library, Westfield

Westfield Memorial Library Spring Book Sale

Arts & Entertainment


Fri, April 27, 10:00 AM

Westfield Memorial Library, Westfield

Westfield Memorial Library Spring Book Sale

Arts & Entertainment

Westfield Police Blotter: Two Reported Shopliftings & More

April 25, 2018

April 19, 2018 9:36 a.m.

Officer McCarthy arrested Paul S. Lee, age 36, of Ridgewood, NJ, at Westfield Police Department headquarters on the strength of an outstanding Westfield warrant in the amount of $89. Subject was processed and released after posting bail.


April 19, 2018 12:01 p.m.

A resident of Central Avenue reported being the victim of identity theft. Unknown actor(s) ...

Reduce Your Risk for Colorectal Cancer

April 25, 2018

Morristown Medical Center’s Carol G. Simon Cancer Center presents “Protecting Your Colorectal Health” on Tuesday, May 1 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Morristown Medical Center Health Pavilion, 333 Mount Hope Avenue in Rockaway. Admission is free.

This popular, educational program presents an opportunity to hear up-to-date presentations from leading ...

Ways to Increase Your Home's Equity

Sometimes you forget and don’t realize your home provides so much to your life. It brings along with it your dreams of the future, shelter to you and your family, a way to provide a better lifestyle, a better commute, a neighborhood, schools, community involvement and recreational facilities. But it also provides a way to save for the future. It does this by allowing you to build your ...

Westfield Public Schools Welcomes Community to Auditorium Open Houses

Two years ago, voters in Westfield approved a bond referendum to renovate the aging auditoriums in Edison and Roosevelt Intermediate Schools. Major aspects of the renovations include new seating and flooring, electrical and lighting upgrades, state-of-the-art sound systems, acoustical treatments and air conditioning.

On April 11 and 12, students, staff, families and other members of the ...

'The Sting' shimmers and shakes at Paper Mill

‘The Sting ‘slithers and shakes at Paper Mill Playhouse


MILLBURN, NJ – In a premiere production of “The Sting,” Harry Connick Jr. commands the Paper Mill Playhouse stage in Millburn.

Based on the sensational Paul Newman/Robert Redford film in 1973, the 1930s plot centers on a con game and gambling, sometimes on a train between New York and ...

Why We Keep Kosher

Why We Keep Kosher

This week's parshah, Shemini, introduces the Torah's dietary laws. Animals must chew their cud and have split hooves to be kosher, fish need fins and scales, and a list of forbidden fowl is enumerated.

To those of us in Jewish education, it is a continuing source of disappointment that so many Jews still believe the kosher laws to be outdated.

Hellenic Therapy Center

April 13, 2018

Dropping Off Our Kids At College – Learning How To Adjust

Hellenic Therapy Center


Whether your kid is a freshman entering college for the first time or returning back to college, there are so many emotions we experience as parents.  There are differences in a parent’s reaction to the departure of a first child, an only child or even the last child.  Feelings ...


Oct 21, 1944 - Apr 14, 2018
Kathleen A. Hertell passed away peacefully with family at her bedside on April 14, 2018. Loving ...
Read more

‘A Sad Day for Paterson’ as Police Officer Loses Life in Car Crash

April 23, 2018

PATERSON, NJ — On what Paterson Superior Officers Association President Mason Maher called “a sad day for Paterson,” a city police officer lost his life on Sunday after he was involved in a motor vehicle collision while on duty.

Several sources familiar with Sunday’s tragic accident have identified the fallen officer as Tamby Yagan, a 13-year veteran of the ...