DeBary mayor asks sheriff’s office to intervene in growing fights, meth use among middle schoolers

DeBARY, Fla. — Fights and threats on campus and disrespectful behavior among middle school children have DeBary’s mayor looking to take action.

She’s asking the sheriff’s office to come before the city council to discuss what can be done.

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The mayor said she’s concerned about some of the recent behavior among middle schoolers and is now reaching out to community partners to see what they can do.

READ: Seminole County to add more staff to address increased fights at Markham Woods Middle School

Mayor Karen Chasez said her concern arose from not only the videos, but from hearing about threats made this year against the middle school and finding out meth is the drug of choice among middle school students.

The city has popular sports and arts programs, and one of the lowest crime rates in the county.

But Chasez wants to work with the school and the sheriff’s office to see if more can be done.

READ: Some Seminole County schools seeing increase in fights breaking out

“I’m looking to see what can all of the systems around our young people do to help them when we see risk-taking behavior that, if allowed unchecked, can go into very wrong directions,” Chasez said.

School Board Chairman Ruben Colon said, nationwide, students have struggled in adjusting back to the classroom, and there have been fights and insubordination.

READ: Deputies arrest 13-year-old Umatilla Middle School student for school shooting threat

There have been more counselors available to students, less unsupervised movement through school buildings and restorative practices.

The mayor said she is having the sheriff’s office come to the city council meeting Dec. 15 to discuss the problems.

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Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.