Fayette County students bombarded with mass emails

Fayette County School district students experienced a mass influx of emails from other students on Monday, Nov. 14.


Marjorie Smedley

Featured emails from Monday night, which lasted from 6:20 to 6:40 PM.

Marjorie Smedley, Opinions Editor

Around 6:20 P.M. on Monday, Nov. 14, a mass email was sent out to students of Fayette county, which eventually led to a mass email chain that went on until 6:40 P.M., when the last email was sent out. The email chain was started by a student sending out an email to [email protected], which meant every student with @fcboe.org in their address received the email that evening. The Fayette County District is comprised of six high schools, six middle schools, and fourteen elementary schools. No elementary students received the email chain due to restrictions on Chromebooks, but all middle and high school students received the email Monday night.

The following day, Fayette County sent out the following email to parents:

“Last night (November 14) students in grades 6-12 began receiving mass email messages from other students. Some messages contained inappropriate content.

Within minutes after notification, the school system’s technology department disabled the students’ ability to send to the affected group, preventing further emails.

There was no breach of student data or student accounts.

An investigation is ongoing. Settings have been adjusted to prevent this from happening in the future.”

Some of the inappropriate content contained racial slurs and provocative language, which in the Fayette County Code of Conduct, which is “use of vulgar, or obscene words, gestures, or other actions” can be penalized by “in-school suspension to short-term suspension or a recommendation for a disciplinary tribunal hearing.”

Additionally, the email also stated:

“The Fayette County Acceptable Use Policy (IFBG) states that technology resources are provided for educational purposes that promote and are consistent with the instructional goals of the Fayette County Public School System. Use of computers and network resources outside the scope of this educational purpose is strictly prohibited.

The student(s) responsible for starting the email thread, and those who sent inappropriate messages, will face appropriate disciplinary action.

Protecting the cyber safety of our students is a top priority. We continue to audit our systems to verify appropriate settings.”

The Fayette County District Code of Conduct also includes computer trespass, stating that “unauthorized use of a computer or computer network including deleting, obstructing, interrupting, altering, damaging or in any way causing the malfunction of the computer network” and penalties “range from short-term suspension to a recommendation of a disciplinary tribunal hearing that may result in long-term suspension or expulsion.”

“It was just kids joking around. I understand slurs were used and that’s not school appropriate, but a lot of people thought it was funny,” senior Mel Lorente said.