An unidentified male approached a boy on his way to school Thursday morning, Commack School District officials announced.
According to a statement by Superintendent Donald James, a white man, described to be between 30 and 40 years old with dirty blonde hair, approached the boy on Colby Drive. The man was said to have been wearing box glasses and a light blue jacket and driving either a grey or silver vehicle.
The man reportedly waved at the boy, who was walking to school along Colby Drive. He then stopped his vehicle, opened the door and asked, “Hello little boy, do you need a ride?"
“The student did the right thing and told the man he did not want a ride and ran away,” James said.
A neighbor, who saw the boy, waited with the child for the bus to arrive and reported the incident to the bus driver, who then reported it to the school. The student’s mother then called the police, James said.
“The District’s main concern is the safety of our students and I will do everything in my power to assure their safety at all times. Should you encounter any suspicious persons on school ground, or anyplace else, please contact the police immediately,” he said.
The superintendent said that the district is taking all steps necessary in an effort to insure the safety of all students and staff including but not limited to the following:
- District security personnel and SCPD will be present in and around the area of the incident during bus stop times;
- Additional security staff have been present at each school, and will remain present, from arrival to dismissal times daily; and
- Staff will be notified via memoranda and/or specifically designed staff meetings to review and reinforce proper security protocol(s) including:
- The need to keep exterior doors locked at all times; and
- The need to insure that all persons entering any district buildings must produce proper identification and a legitimate reason to enter the building.
District officials are asking parents and students to take the following safety precautions:
- When walking to and from school or in the community, especially at night, walk with a friend whenever possible;
- Wear white or light colored clothing at night to increase visibility;
- If your child has a cell phone, make sure it’s charged before he/she leaves the house, and know where your child will be at all times;
- Remind your children to call 911 in case of any emergency or if an unsafe situation occurs;
- When children are at home alone, doors should be locked at all times;
- Talk to your children and offer them advice and guidance on how to handle confrontations. (For example, run from/do not speak to strangers, and other safety-related topics.)