Morristown High fight followup: New principal says facts no match for Twitterverse

Some wild stories of bloody mayhem were being Tweeted after Wednesday’s fracas at Morristown High School. But the facts are more mundane, according to Mark Manning, the school’s new principal.

“It’s unfortunate that a great deal of rumors and misinformation were being communicated by social media, causing undue concern and alarm,” the Principal said in an announcement to students on Thursday.

Police cars outside Morristown High School on Wednesday. Photo via Twitter.

Police cars outside Morristown High School after Wednesday’s fighting incidents. Photo via Twitter.

Two unrelated fights involved eight students on two floors, he said.  One of the students sustained a scrape to the face, according to Morris School District spokesperson Mary Donohoe.

No adults were injured and “there were no weapons or drugs involved or uncovered. There were no arrests as a result of the incident,” the Principal told students, adding that  “appropriate disciplinary consequences” would be meted out to all the combatants.

Police, who responded to the lunchtime scene in large numbers, have not yet released details on the incidents.

Principal Manning, who was promoted last month after stints as MHS interim principal and principal of Frelinghuysen Middle School, said one scuffle involved two students in the lower atrium, outside the cafeteria. The other fight involved six students on the second floor.

The building never was in lockdown mode, Mary Donohoe said.  Students told that they were instructed to remain in their classrooms as the situation played out.

“They ended lunch early and went to the next class, and a normal school day ensued from that point on,” Mary said.

No special security measures were deemed necessary for Thursday’s classes, she said. It was not immediately clear whether the students who fought on Wednesday had returned to school.

Wednesday’s large police response was prudent, Mary said.

“Any time something like that happens that is out of the ordinary, we want to be sure it’s handled appropriately and quickly,” she said.




  1. Being a student at the school, I find it ridiculous that they are saying it wasn’t a lockdown. They made multiple announcements stating that no students were to be let out of the classroom unless it was absolutely required. It wasn’t a total lockdown, but the statement that it was just a normal day is false. Normally, administrators, cops, and security guards wouldn’t patrol the hallways and demand to see hall passes.

  2. Two points I would like to make:
    - The situation was defused in a highly efficient and professional manner.
    - Don’t learn the wrong lesson in regard to social media. You cannot prevent bad news. The best way to marginalize bad news is to overwhelm it with a constant flow of good news.

    PS. A lunchtime fight was not news when I was in school.

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