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John Huber


Title: Oxford, MI Shooting: A Look into the Comprehensive Guidepost Solutions Report

The tragic shooting in Oxford, Michigan, nearly two years ago has resurfaced in the news due to the release of a comprehensive 562-page report by Guidepost Solutions LLC. In this report, the independent third-party investigative body delves into the events leading up to the shooting, shedding light on various aspects of the incident and the school system’s response. We’ll explore some key findings and insights from the report, which shed light on the incident’s preventability and the crucial role of administrators.

The Objective Third Party Investigation

The report, conducted by Guidepost Solutions, positions itself as an objective third-party entity tasked with uncovering facts surrounding the tragic incident. It emphasizes that throughout the investigative process, many key individuals chose not to cooperate with the investigation, hindering the pursuit of crucial information. The report states that of the 161 individuals with potential knowledge of the shooter’s actions, only 35% agreed to be interviewed. The reluctance of witnesses to participate becomes apparent, likely due to the numerous lawsuits arising from the incident.

Contentious Points of the Report

One point of contention centers on an incident that unfolded the day before the shooting. In this unsettling episode, a teacher observed the shooter viewing images of bullets on his phone. What makes this incident even more complex is the presence of another teacher in the same room who later revealed that she had also noticed this on the student’s Chromebook screen, thanks to a teacher monitoring program. Their divergent accounts have given rise to questions about the overall credibility of witness testimonies. The Guidepost Solutions report brings to light the school’s shortcomings in extracting critical information from these key witnesses, particularly focusing on the role of a PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) coordinator who was responsible for reporting the incident to the counselor.

Cell Phone Violation or Content Concern?

The report highlights the discrepancy between whether the incident was merely a cell phone violation or a concern regarding the content viewed on the phone. The PBIS coordinator maintained that it was strictly a cell phone violation, arguing that the content itself (bullets) was not the reason behind the conference or the concern. The report’s relentless questioning of this issue underscores why many individuals chose not to cooperate with the investigation. The PBIS coordinator’s differing accounts between her conversations with the police and her statements in the report raise questions about the school’s handling of the situation.

Administrative Responsibility and Preventability

The report underscores the glaring lack of administrative follow-through at the system level. Although the system had robust policies in place, they were not properly executed, leading to the tragedy. The failure to ensure that policies were implemented consistently becomes a focal point of criticism, as the report highlights lapses in communication, inadequate training, and the absence of an effective threat assessment process. Additionally, the district’s suicide prevention guidelines were found to be outdated and unaddressed, further indicating the lack of administrative oversight.  It was the responsibility of the Superintendent and two of his executive assistants to assure that policies revolving around school safety were properly being implemented at the building level.  Both of these assistant superintendents deny that it was their responsibility. They have also refused to speak with Guidepost investigators.

One critical aspect that the report reveals this apparent disconnect between executive-level administration and building-level administrators. The failure to communicate and ensure that protocols are consistently followed is a significant factor contributing to the incident’s preventability. The report makes it clear that responsibility, not blame, is the key focus, highlighting the importance of accountable and transparent school administration.

The release of the 562-page report from Guidepost Solutions LLC serves as a stark reminder of the tragic events that unfolded in Oxford, Michigan, nearly two years ago. The report not only sheds light on the preventable nature of the incident but also underscores the critical importance of effective administrative oversight and communication in school systems. It provides valuable lessons for administrators and educators across the nation on the significance of timely, transparent, and accountable action in safeguarding the well-being of students and the prevention of future tragedies.

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The MEN was founded by John Huber in the fall of 2020. It was founded to provide a platform for expert opinion and commentary on current issues that directly or indirectly affect education. All opinions are valued and accepted providing they are expressed in a professional manner. The Maryland Education Network consists of Blogs, Videos, and other interaction among the K-12 community.

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