Please note the below district statements regarding Maverick Stow. The William Floyd School District takes student privacy seriously, however, considering that the student and his family already disclosed the information in public forums, we felt compelled to share the below in response to multiple media inquiries.
9/24/20 at 6 pm
Despite what Maverick will tell you, he was not suspended for just “trying to go to school.” Over the course of three days, he was grossly insubordinate to multiple school personnel, squared up to a district official in a threatening manner and despite multiple conversations and opportunities to avoid suspension, continued to display insubordinate behavior. After his second attempt to enter school grounds, the Stow family received a criminal trespass warning. However, the very real possibility of arrest did nothing to dissuade him. On the third day, he showed up again, but this time with a contingent of media to capture his arrest for all the world to see. As a result of his actions over these three days, we held a superintendent’s hearing with an impartial hearing officer, who found Maverick guilty of gross insubordination for his disruptive behavior and recommended suspension for one year with senior privileges revoked. If he does the right thing from this point forward, we will re-evaluate his suspension at the end of the second quarter. In the interest of transparency, Maverick and his attorney should provide the media with the full written determination of the hearing officer so you can see the truth of all that occurred. The most important thing that seems to be glossed over is that any individual — whether a suspended student or non-student — attempting to enter school grounds without authorization is treated with the utmost seriousness, especially in this day and age. Safety and security of our students and staff will always be the top priority.
9/15/20 at 3:20 pm
The below statement was provided in response to media inquiries regarding student Maverick Stow's suspension after he or an authorized representative shared the suspension letter with the press. Here is today's statement regarding this issue:
We have zero tolerance for suspended students or unauthorized people trying to enter our buildings to disrupt the educational process and/or to potentially cause an unsafe environment for our students and staff. We do not usually discuss student matters publicly, however, we will do so once again, since he shared his suspension with the media.
Mr. Stow has been suspended for the remainder of the school year and will not be permitted on school grounds or at any school-sponsored events during his suspension, which includes all senior activities and privileges. This determination was made by an impartial hearing officer at a superintendent’s hearing attended by Mr. Stow’s legal counsel, as well as attorneys representing the district. The written determination of the hearing officer was made after an exhaustive hearing at which numerous witnesses testified to Mr. Stow’s repeated insubordination and disruption despite being given multiple opportunities to avoid suspension. Due to privacy issues, the district cannot supply that written determination. However, Mr. Stow’s attorney has a copy and should be able to provide it to you upon request.
Additionally, as the letter Mr. Stow shared publicly states, if he abides by the suspension and is a student in good standing, we will revisit his suspension at the end of the second quarter to determine whether or not he will be permitted to attend in-person classes and have his senior privileges reinstated for the second half of the school year. School safety and security has been and always will be a top priority in our district.
9/10/20 at 10:30 am
Today, Maverick Stow, as reported by the media, was arrested for criminal trespassing for unlawfully entering school grounds. As a district, our primary focus aside from providing a high-quality education, is to provide a safe learning environment for students and staff. Any attempt by a student who has been suspended or any other unauthorized person trying to enter school grounds is taken extremely seriously and will be met with the most severe consequences. School safety is a top priority especially in this day and age.
Mr. Stow continues to display irresponsible and selfish behavior with today’s latest publicity stunt. He arrived wearing a neon green shirt – for high visibility – with a contingent of media just outside the fence line trying to capture him getting arrested as he entered the building. He entered the building and was immediately arrested by the Suffolk County Police Department without incident and transported to the police station. As a result, if Mr. Stow continues to try to access school grounds each day that we are open, we will close the high school – and its approximately 3,000 students – to all in-person learning and it will be all virtual for the foreseeable future.
We are still in the midst of a pandemic and will abide by the regulations set in place by our government and health officials designed to keep our students and staff safe. As we have said, Mr. Stow’s rights as a student do not surpass the rights of any of our other 8,799 students; they should not have to come to school to witness this circus atmosphere each day. Most of our in-person classes at the high school are at maximum capacity according to the square footage of each classroom. It is just not possible to have all of our students back under the current social distancing regulations. We will not condone or allow students to flagrantly break the law in our schools.
9/9/20 at 12:08 pm
Our district agrees with Maverick’s position that school should be held in person five days per week as students learn best in person. However, we must follow the social distancing requirements set forth by the state; and, when it is deemed safe to do so by our government and health officials, we will gladly welcome all of our 8,800 students back. It is important for Maverick and his family to understand that we do not set state policy, enact laws or write executive orders, but we do abide by them. We cannot have students showing up to school on their non-scheduled in-person days and when requested to leave displaying insubordinate behavior to multiple school officials and refusing to follow their instructions. His rights as a student do not surpass the rights of the other 8,799 students we have the privilege of educating. If his goal is to get school open five days per week, he is encouraged to take his advocacy to his state elected officials.
Additionally, Maverick showed up to school again this morning despite his suspension and continued to display insubordinate behavior – even at one point squaring up to a district official and stating that the district would have to “forcibly remove” him from school grounds. As a district we must work to ensure a safe and disruption-free environment for students who are following the rules and showing up to learn. We take school safety seriously and since he has escalated this situation, the police are now involved. When a student is suspended off of school grounds for any reason, we cannot and will not tolerate students trying to gain access to our grounds or buildings. We work extremely hard to ensure the safety of our students and staff.
Additionally, this pandemic has illuminated the inequities in school districts based on their zip codes. We have a 65% free and reduced meal rate and more than 300 students who are classified as homeless. We are unable to provide all of our students with the technology they need for remote learning at this time, and when we can, some do not even have internet access. With additional mandates being handed down regularly along with a reduction in state aid (and with more possible), it has become the perfect storm.
9/8/20 at 2:50 pm
We are following the social distancing mandates set forth by New York State. In order to adhere to these guidelines, it is imperative that students attend school during their scheduled in-person days only. While we would love nothing more than to have all 8,800 students back in-person five days per week, it is not possible at this time due to the pandemic. Students who refuse to adhere to their scheduled in-person days and/or flagrantly disregard directives to leave school grounds and cause a disruptive environment for other students, will face disciplinary actions.
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