Changes being made at Central High School following lunchroom brawl

- Central High School in Prince George’s County is making changes after a huge fight Friday that sent three students in the hospital.

The school district told FOX 5 on Tuesday that the school will reassign current staff to increase security in the lunchroom where the fight broke out. The school currently has one school resource officer and three security guards, and the district said that will not change.

The school will also create a new student task force.

"A Principal's Student Advisory Team, made up of a diverse group of students, will be created to ensure student voices are heard," said in a letter sent out by the high school that went out to parents.

The lunchroom brawl was caught on camera and shows a large number of students attacking each other as three adults try to break it up.

A spokesperson for Prince George's County Public Schools said a group of African-American students assaulted a group of Hispanic students. However, dozens of students reached out to FOX 5 to say they don't believe the fight was about race or that there is a racial divide at the school.

"What happened on Friday was not about race or anything," one student wrote. "There was a misunderstanding because of a good fight."

"There is not a racial divide at this school. Students get along, African American or Hispanic, Muslim or Christian, LGBT or not," said an email from several freshman girls. "And when we don't get along, it's due to silly high school drama."

All students had to take part in an assembly about the fight on Monday, according to district leaders.

Prince George's County police said the school resource officer called for backup after the fight started and there were no arrests.

The school district said students were punished according to school guidelines.

FOX 5 spoke to students who said they heard at the assembly that the aggressors in the fight have been expelled.

Prince George's County Public Schools said in a statement:

"Prince George’s County Public Schools officials are aware of last week’s incident at Central High School. We are working with school administrators to maintain a school environment that respects others’ cultural differences and addresses any safety concerns.

"Principal Keishia Wallace called students’ homes this afternoon and sent an electronic message to families that addresses the incident and next steps. Additional school staff has been assigned to the cafeteria during lunch periods. School staff will be working in partnership with the PGCPS Diversity Office to maintain a positive school climate. The principal is also creating a student advisory team comprised of diverse voices. A letter will be sent home with all students tomorrow emphasizing this message.

"We are focused now on alleviating student and parent concerns. Every effort will be made to keep students safe and support a welcoming learning environment for all students."

This is the message that was sent out by Central High School principal Keishia Wallace to parents:

"On Friday, December 16, a student fight occurred in the cafeteria during lunch. The incident originated as a food fight, but became physical, resulting in injuries to a few students. Staff and security personnel were stationed in the cafeteria at the time as part of our daily routine. Additional support was immediately extended by School Security and other school staff members to intervene and resume lunch service to all students.

"An investigation is ongoing. Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken in accordance with the guidelines of the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook.  The safety of scholars is paramount and all efforts will be taken to maintain a school environment that is conducive to the highest levels of student learning.

"As a school community, we are committed to maintaining a learning environment that encourages respect for all, regardless of cultural differences. The Prince George’s County Public Schools Diversity Office and other central office supports  are partnering with Central in this effort. Additionally, a Principal's Student Advisory Team, made up of a diverse group of students, will be created to ensure student voices are heard.

"Please feel free to contact me at 301-499-7080 if you have additional concerns regarding this incident. Thank you for your continued support of Central High School."

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