Fired Teacher Returns to School, Kills Headmistress and Himself
Although some students thought their former teacher, Shane Schumert, would return to the school and “do something,” nobody really saw it coming when he did.
On March 6, 2012, Schumert returned to Episcopal High School, a private high school in Florida where he had worked until earlier that morning when he had been fired with an AK-47 assault rifle hidden in a guitar case. He shot and killed the school’s headmistress, Dale Regan, and then turned the gun on himself and committed suicide.
Details concerning why Schumert was dismissed have not been released, but one student, Maria Boyance, told a local newspaper that she heard he had been fired and was escorted out of the school. Boyance described Schumert as being an “awkward man.”
“He didn’t really seem to fit in with the other teachers,” said Lilly Sheppard, another student at the school.
However, this social awkwardness did not make most people think he would be able to kill another person. John Winkler knew Schumert through the Concerned Taxpayers of Duval County organization, in which Schumert was a member.
“There was absolutely nothing that any of us ever saw that would indicate that he was either capable – or even capable of contemplating – the kind of action he took today,” Winker said about Schumert and the murder he committed.
This was not the first time Schumert had left a job in a bad light. In June 2010, he resigned from a public school in the area due to personal reasons. His former employers gave him a “do not hire” status at this point because he didn’t complete his argreed-upon term of working at the school for three years, even though he had already accepted the $1,000 bonus that was associated with the agreement.
It is possible that nobody will ever know what caused Schumert to take the actions he did, but in the meantime, people are trying to deal with the situation. There was a memorial ceremony for Regan the night after she was killed and classes at the school have been cancelled until after spring break.
“The entire school family mourns the loss of our friend and leader,” the school said in a statement.
Our thoughts and prayers will be with this community in their difficult time.