New controversy at the start of Oxford school year 9 months after mass shooting

Posted at 4:47 PM, Sep 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-02 18:16:15-04

OXFORD, Mich. (WXYZ) — Parents at Daniel Axford Elementary School in Oxford were notified yesterday that some students found a blank bullet and gave it to their teacher. The school was used for Homeland Security training in early August while school was out.

Interview with Jill Lemond

“I would call it irresponsible,” says Andrea Jones a mother of two students, one in high school and the other in 8th grade. She adds, “Directly after our tragedy, something like that can be extremely triggering for not just the kids but the community. When there were multiple other options in the middle of summer.”

Jennifer Hart has a son in the elementary school and says while her son had no issues, this is a small community, “They know kids at the high school that have siblings or knew someone who unfortunately passed away or was injured.”

Assistant Superintendent Jill Lemond is in charge of security and school operations. She tells 7 Action News, “I think it was absolutely imperative to do that training and we plan to do more trainings, getting our law enforcement to a place where they are familiar with our buildings familiar with our procedures. I know we had officers from across the state, and I do believe hundreds if not thousands of rounds, blanks obviously, were shot in the building. And to find one errant one it was certainly expected. It's unfortunate.”

Oxford families were also notified yesterday that Lemond is taking a job with Evolv, the company that has donated high-tech weapon detection systems in the high school for four years free. Any cost after that is not being disclosed. Lemond says there’s a bigger job to be done, “I really feel that I have an opportunity now to go and raise awareness in other schools to help make legislative change and potentially get more school funding.”

But on the other side, Hart says, “That was honestly the more upsetting piece of news I found out yesterday. This doesn’t lend us to place a lot of trust in them.”

And Jones says, “It doesn't make a whole lot of logical sense to me to have our head of security leave at the beginning of what is to be a very difficult school year security wise for us and transferred to the company that she helped bring in.”

Lemond responds to 7 Action News with, “I appreciate that. I understand that. But I don’t know that there could be a better time for me to go and make change in the world.”