Administrators, parents meet following student brawl at Hawthorne High

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ByJory Rand via KABC logo
Thursday, November 12, 2015
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Cellphone video captured students at Hawthorne High School in a brawl Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015.

HAWTHORNE, Calif. (KABC) -- School staff from Hawthorne High School met with parents to discuss a recent student brawl at Hawthorne High School that was caught on video Tuesday and went viral on social media.

Increased security is expected at the school after Hawthorne police said multiple groups of students got into fist fights at lunch time, where a student, school staff member and Hawthorne police officer suffered minor injuries.

Three students were arrested for assault, and police are investigating the viral video for more suspects.

Officials said it took more than 30 minutes to get students out of the lunch area and into classrooms.

The principal of Hawthorne High School held a meeting Wednesday night in the multi-purpose library to better inform parents about the fight. Nearly 200 parents and students attended the meeting to voice their concerns.

"I do worry," said Jakita Morgan, mother of a junior at Hawthorne High School. "I'm not sure I'm gonna send her back tomorrow."

Administrators wanted to reassure parents their children will be safe and the students responsible for the fight will face disciplinary action.

"I'm pretty confident that it's a safe place for students to come. We're going to be very active here tomorrow. We'll have extra safety officers here as well as district personnel," assistant superintendent Mike Ono said.

"We have cameras on campus, we're reviewing tapes about what happened and we'll deal with each child individually," principal Dr. Mark Newell said.

Some parents said they are not worried about safety concerns at the school

"No, my kids will be at school tomorrow," said Mary Davis, whose two sons attend Hawthorne High School.

A second meeting is scheduled for Thursday night.

Hawthorne police are continuing an investigation on what sparked the violence. Some students say the brawl was a result of escalating tensions between black students and Hispanic students on campus.

School officials said multiple expulsions are probable.

"I don't know if it was racially motivated. I think it had a lot to do with kids just being kids," Ono said.

Some students, however, say the melee was not kids just being kids, and it's not how they want to be represented as a school.