Aberdeen councillors have been gagged from speaking about the Bailey Gwynne tragedy as an independent review is launched into the circumstances surrounding his death.
A 16-year-old – who cannot be named for legal reasons – was convicted of killing the youth with a knife at Cults Academy.
But it emerged during his trial that he had been previously warned about the dangers of carrying knives by the school’s head teacher Anna Muirhead.
He also claimed during a police interview that there was a “big drugs problem” at the secondary in the affluent suburb.
The city council has refused to directly answer a series of questions put to it by the Press and Journal since a jury convicted Bailey’s 16-year-old attacker of culpable homicide.
Instead, the local authority has posted an online questions and answers section on its website entitled “Cults Academy Tragedy: What the council is allowed to say”.
In it the authority denies there is a drugs problem at the academy and says teachers never knew about the weapons cache that the youngster brought to school – which included knuckledusters as well as knives.
It reads: “Cults Academy is one of the highest performing schools in Scotland and does not have a ‘drugs problem’.
“The school has a zero-tolerance approach to drugs and teachers are always vigilant for any warning signs.
“The court heard during the trial it was never reported to the teaching staff of Cults Academy that this pupil was in possession of any weapons, had it been it would have been appropriately dealt with.
“Where any such incidents take place in schools, there are a variety of appropriate responses that will be considered. The safety of pupils is of paramount importance and we actively encourage pupils to report any behaviour of concern to school staff.”
Also contained in the post is a promise to update the page with progress of anything new that can be said.
Despite attempts last night, senior local authority administration members did not respond to our calls.
But a well-placed source confirmed that councillors were being advised against speaking further about the incident, or making any more media appearances, until the end of the review.
The results will be published and made available to the public.
But one councillor defied the ban on condition of anonymity saying the “wall of silence” approach was not best approach.
They said: “It’s completely valid for the public to want to know more and the council should be providing more information at this stage.
“It’s right for parents and pupils to know they will be safe in school.
“The council should really be open and forthcoming with this information.”