Inside tip prompts student search at Oak Hill Middle School

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OAK HILL, WV (WVNS) – Concerned parents reached out to 59 News on Monday, January 27, 2020, claiming their children who attend Oak Hill Middle School were searched by authorities.

After speaking with school administrators, including principal Cynthia Hendrick, and Superintendent of Fayette County Schools, Terry George, they both confirmed this search was initiated with probable cause.

Hendrick confirmed her staff received two different tips from students on Monday, insisting their classmates had illegal contraband. This prompted a random search of eighth grade students.

The search was conducted by an Oak Hill Police school resource officer and school administrators. They were required to look through backpacks, lockers, and personal items. They did find several materials that were not permitted on school grounds. George said those were then confiscated, and the students responsible will face certain consequences.

“We’re very vigilant about making sure that illegal drugs, illegal vaping products or an illegal weapon is not brought to school,” George said. “It’s our responsibility to make certain that we confiscate it and get rid of it.”

59 News also spoke with local law enforcement who assured it is part of school policy to search students if there is reason to believe something is going on. Principal Hendrick said no students were arrested, and they are handling the incident internally.

She also added that she is proud of the students that came forward, because safety is their number one priority.

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