Student's death prompts investigation at McCulloch Junior High School

Publish Date: 01/15/2014
Monday, May 6, 2013, at McCulloch Junior High School, a death investigation was undertaken after a female student was found deceased on school grounds.

Marion Community Schools wishes to express sincere condolences to the family of Braylee Rice, a seventh-grader at McCulloch. This is a very tragic situation. Our hearts go out to her family and friends.

In light of the tragic circumstances, we decided after consulting with the State Department of Education to keep school in session today on a modified schedule. Out of concern for the safety of those children who may have gone home to empty houses, we opted to keep school open and in session.

Students were kept in their classrooms, rather than following their regular schedule. The school was not, however, locked down. Parents were allowed to pick up their students, and many did so.

Counseling was provided throughout the day at McCulloch for both students and staff. Counselors from throughout the school system, along with other schools, Family Service Society and other community organizations, were on hand, and we are grateful for the support of those organizations.

There will also be counselors this afternoon on the bus the student rode. Counseling will continue to be available in the coming days at the school for students and staff. We also encourage students in need of help to reach out to any adult in the building.

There has been speculation about a connection to bullying, but at this early point in the investigation, there has been no indication of such a connection.

Marion Community Schools is fully cooperating with law enforcement officials and their ongoing investigation.

We will provide further information as it becomes available. However, we will leave it to police and the coroner’s office to provide specific details of the investigation.