LAPD Chief Charlie Beck is hitting back after NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton was critical of LAUSD's decision to close public schools throughout the district following a threat. It's too soon to know if the threat is a hoax or a credible threat to the district's 640,000 students, and some 70,000 employees. Bratton and other NYC officials deemed a similar threat to the public schools in New York to be a hoax and schools remained open today. Two cities and two very different approaches to a possible crisis. Both Beck and Bratton have plenty of experience in crisis communication. But I have to wonder why Bratton found it necessary to publically criticize LA's decision at this stage. The all clear has not been called. He is a former LAPD Chief and perhaps he believes that gives him some ownership too.
At a news conference Beck said it was "irresponsible to criticize the decision." He spoke of the tough times we are living in and said that LAUSD officials have three quarters of a million lives to consider when a decision like this is made. Beck's comments were measured and he came off as reasonable, not angry.
Combing through social media posts, I have found many parents and teachers support LAUSD's decision.