Clowns Create Chaos

By ALEXA ALBICOCCO

The recent clown sighting phenomenon has impacted some Long Island neighborhoods, but so far has not touched Jericho. However, that hasn’t kept students and staff from being cautious and aware.

According to reports in “Newsday,” clown sightings caused chaos at multiple high schools on Long Island in the early fall semester. Both North Babylon High School and Central Islip High School went on temporary lock-down after clowns were reported near the schools. Police investigated the situations and found no credible threats, so the lock-downs in both schools were lifted at around 10:45 a.m. Following these events, the Oyster Bay-East Norwich Central School District requested that police increase patrols at their schools. That weekend, the Suffolk County Police received two reports of people dressed as clowns jumping in front of cars in Brentwood, NY.

In response to the creepy clown sightings, a woman named Shelly Gutierrez organized a Clown Lives Matter March. This march was meant to make the public feel safe, and teach people to not be afraid of clowns. After Shelly Gutierrez received death threats, the event got cancelled. On her Facebook page, she apologized to everyone who was supposed to attend the walk.

Freshman, Sujay A. believes the clowns are not scary, but is being more cautious outside.

Freshman Sujay A. believes the clowns are not scary, but he is being more cautious outside.

Clowns have not appeared in Jericho, however high school Principal Ms. Rosenberg has addressed the issue. She has facilitated conversations among staff that “focused on being observant and reminding students that face paint and masks aren’t allowed in school.”

Multiple students have admitted that this situation has made them more cautious in and out of school.  Freshman Sujay A. said, “They’ve made me more concerned about being outside late at night, but I’m not afraid of them because they are just doing this as a prank.” Freshman Ryan S. stated, “They seem violent and I don’t want to get hurt. I am going to be very careful when I go trick-or-treating and make sure I don’t get in any trouble with them.” Jericho Middle School health teacher Ms. Kamvakis explained her thoughts on the clowns. “I think it’s ridiculous. They are an annoyance because all of the children are afraid of clowns.” However, she didn’t allow these clowns to impact her family’s Halloween. “I allowed my children to go trick or treating without me in a restricted area. They are not impacting how protective I am of my children,” she said.

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