Yearbook flap brings back school tragedy

By JAMES MITCHELL
Sunday Times Newspapers

SOUTHGATE — Students, teachers and school officials last week were further reminded of the tragedy that shook the Davidson Middle School family last week.

A yearbook oversight raised memories of Tyler Nichols, 13, who committed suicide in March, and sparked false accusations that the administration attempted to remove a picture of the absent student.

It was reported on television news Monday that Tyler’s photo was “omitted” from the yearbook. When interviewed, Tyler’s mother, Ann Nichols, said she thought the absence was a decision made by school authorities. A TV reporter also interviewed students at Davidson, and asked what they thought of the district leaving the picture out.

The misunderstanding, Supt. William Gresecki said, was that Tyler had not been in school when class photos — separate from pictures taken for school identification cards — were taken. Tyler does appear in two yearbook photos, but not on the class pages of individual pictures.

“We did not pull the picture,” Grusecki said. The yearbook staff had sent its final materials to the printer in early March, before the suicide.

Grusecki said a television reporter had seen a social media posting which stated that the missing photo had been intentional, which was reported “without checking with the school,” Grusecki said. “They painted a picture that we made a decision (to remove a photo), but that’s not what happened.”

(James Mitchell can be reached at jmitchell@bewickpublications.com.)

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