22.7 C
Sunday, May 24, 2020
Connecting Our Communities

April Fools prank hits school board social media

WRDSB moved quickly to have posting removed, assured families about school-year plans

Normally the first day of April is devoted to good humoured pranks on friends and family. But, one person may have taken things too far this year, as false information on the school year for the Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) sent some students and their families into panic mode.

On April 1, a fake Instagram account was created alleging to belong to the WRDSB, with  falsified information about the school year being posted.

Parts of website information were changed as part of April Fools joke on April 1, 2020.

At the same time, fake tweets were created stating that the school year would be extended throughout the summer months with longer hours to accommodate the closure of schools due to the coronavirus (COVID-19). Tweets also stated that there was an “increasing spread of COVID-19 amongst Ontario teachers and staff members.”

The WRDSB acted quickly to gain access to the fake account and remove all falsified information and ensure students and families knew the information was not legitimate.

Lynsey Slupeiks, communications officer with the WRDSB, says they’re working to find out who created and distributed the false information, stressing such actions are unacceptable, especially during the current crisis.

More fake information.

“It is an uncertain time and you don’t know (what’s going to happen), you see something come out that you think is from a trusted source … and also this information that came out was completely opposite of what we have been saying and sharing,” said Slupeiks.

She added it’s unfortunate this happened during a time when COVID-19 has so many things in flux. The added strain being put on students was not helped by such a stunt, which she says was not very funny.

I hope they know it’s not funny and sharing fake information at a time like this has consequences and it’s not helpful, she said.

Accurate information will continue to be provided through the WRDSB website and questions can be emailed to info@wrdsb.ca.

An instagram screen capture of fake account.

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to The Observer's online community. Pseudonyms are not permitted. By submitting a comment, you accept that The Observer has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner The Observer chooses. Please note that The Observer does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our submission guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

In Print. Online. In Pictures. In Depth.

You obviously love community journalism. Thanks for visiting today. If you have a great local story, let us know.

Wellesley’s COVID-related losses top $81,000; council extends its late-payment relief program

Lost revenues and the waiving of fees in response to the COVID-19 crisis has cost Wellesley Township more than $81,000, and the...

Retirement prompts sale of St. Clements farm

Nauman’s Farm near St. Clements has been synonymous with pumpkins for two decades. Now, while the Nauman family retires from the business,...

Elmira Golf Club reopens over weekend as province lifts some restrictions

It seems like most of the world has been sitting indoors forever, waiting for the chance to see some semblance of normalcy...

More businesses can reopen as province eases restrictions

Some retail businesses with a street entrance were able to reopen last week, subject to guidelines to ensure the continued safety of...

Restaurant donating money from every meal to mask-making efforts

Takeout and delivery are currently the main ways people are continuing to get their favourite meals and support local restaurants during the...

Woolwich extends deferral of late fees for property taxes, water bills

Woolwich residents struggling to pay property taxes and water bills will avoid penalties on late payments through June, as township council this...
- Advertisement -