North Carolina high school criticized for resuming classes after fatal shooting

After administration at Butler High School in Matthews, North Carolina, announced that classes would resume the same day as a fatal school shooting that left one dead, people on social media said the move indicated a normalization of shootings.

CNN reports that a student fatally shot another during a fight that stemming from previous bullying. Bobby McKeithen, 16, died from his injuries in a nearby hospital. The shooter, 16-year-old Jatwan Cuffie, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder.

Butler High School remained on lockdown for two hours as police investigated and the two students were removed from campus. The school district tweeted statements regarding the status of the campus throughout the day.

WSOTV reported that classes would resume at the North Carolina high school shortly after the lockdown was lifted. Many saw this as a sign of schools becoming desensitized to traumatic incidents like school shootings.

Tracy O. Russ, the chief communications officer for the school distrct, told Time that the campus remained open in the interest of the students and their safety.

“Our goal was to ensure that students could remain on campus and safe until such time that transportation arrangements could be made by families,” Russ said.

School officials also said that the shooting was an isolated, mishandled bullying incident between two students, and that there was no longer any danger on the school grounds, according to WCNC. Still, many online believed the administration made an ill-advised decision.

This incident contributes to larger national conversation about the school shootings and gun violence. Many voices in the movement advocating for gun reform commented on Twitter.

Butler High School officials said that classes will resume on Thursday and that counselors will be available for students.

Alexis Tatum

Alexis Tatum

Alexis Tatum studies journalism at the University of Texas at Austin. She's an editorial intern with the Daily Dot. Her work has appeared in Orange magazine and the Daily Texan.