Wallkill, N.Y. – December 13, 2023
A suburban middle school in Wallkill, New York, was plunged into chaos on Wednesday morning when a stabbing incident led to a lockdown at Monhagen Middle School, part of the expanded Middletown City School District in Orange County. The unsettling scene unfolded as students and staff sought refuge during the emergency response, leaving parents and the community on edge.
Monhagen Middle School, catering to approximately 800 students in grades 6, 7, and 8, became the focal point of anxiety as details of the student-in-student incident involving a knife began to emerge.
The altercation, allegedly a fight at the start of the school day, resulted in injuries to two students. School officials promptly arranged for the injured students to be transported to the hospital. In the initial moments of uncertainty, the school implemented a lockdown to ensure the safety of everyone on the premises.
Authorities worked swiftly to contain the situation, localizing it to a specific area within the school. Families were promptly notified of their children’s safety, and those involved in the altercation were removed from the campus. However, law enforcement has chosen to withhold additional details pending further investigation.
In a precautionary move, Monhagen Middle School initiated an early release for all middle school students. Nearby Maple Hill Elementary School, which had been under lockout, has since had the restriction lifted and resumed its normal schedule, with authorities assuring the public that there is no immediate danger at the elementary school.
The incident has prompted an escalated police presence in and around all school campuses as the community grapples with the aftermath of the stabbing. Monhagen Middle School, already grappling with academic challenges, finds itself in the spotlight for reasons beyond its academic performance.
Ranked in the bottom third of New York state schools for math and English proficiency, the school faced eight reported assaults and six incidents of weapons possession during the 2021-22 school year, including the confiscation of a BB gun from a student.
Concerned parents are now calling for increased measures to ensure the safety of their children in the wake of this latest incident, adding pressure on authorities to address both the academic and security issues at Monhagen Middle School.