Immediately after 17 people were murdered inside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the school district launched a persistent effort to keep people from finding out what went wrong.
For months, Broward schools delayed or withheld records, refused to publicly assess the role of employees, spread misinformation and even sought to jail reporters who published the truth.
New information gathered by the South Florida Sun Sentinel proves that the school district knew far more than it’s saying about a disturbed former student obsessed with death and guns who mowed down staff and students with an assault rifle on Valentine’s Day.
After promising an honest assessment of what led to the shooting, the district instead hired a consultant whose primary goal, according to school records, was preparing a legal defense. Then the district kept most of those findings from the public.
Related: Seeing the Forest: Unpacking the Relationship Between Madison School District (WI) Graduation Rates and Student Achievement.