MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — In a message to students and families ahead of the Thanksgiving break, Berkeley County Schools Superintendent Ron Stephens offered a message of gratitude for the community at large for supporting the school system as well as dedicated employees.

Stephens also referred to the social media threat levied at Hedgesville High School Thursday. “We are hopeful will result in several arrests as such actions threaten our students and staff and steal educational time from those who want and deserve an opportunity to learn. We will always treat these threats, as well as false reports to social media, as real and will investigate and prosecute when the situation allows,” Stephens said.

A warning from the state DHHR that indicated the entire Eastern Panhandle was at increased risk for drug overdoses prompted action in the District.

“I want to let you know that today, some of our district schools received visits by local law enforcement accompanied by drug detection K-9’s as a preventive and proactive presence” in response to the report, Stephens said.

“I recognize that this may be alarming to some families, but please know that these visits are meant as an additional layer of safety and security given the risk associated with the posted drug trend,” according to Stephens.

“As we head into the fall break, please take some time to rest and recharge. Spend time thinking and talking about caring for one’s mental and physical self, and when the time presents itself, take the opportunity to think and speak about appropriate and responsible social media use that is beneficial to you individually, your family and our school community.”