(UPDATED November 14, 2022 5:30 PM) The Jackson County Intermediate School District today said a ransomware incident is responsible for the technology systems outage resulting in schools being closed Monday.
On Sunday night, Jackson County school superintendents met with ISD Superintendent Kevin Oxley and technology staff and decided to close all Jackson County public schools on Monday. Late this afternoon, JCISD announced schools will be closed again on Tuesday, November 15, 2022. Superintendent Oxley released the following statement:
“I’m writing to provide an important update on school operating status for tomorrow, Tuesday, November 15, 2022. As you are aware, our technology consortium is currently experiencing a systems outage affecting critical operating systems in the district. This outage occurred because we were victims of a ransomware attack detected over the weekend. Immediately upon discovering suspicious activity, we proactively took systems offline in order to contain the incident. We have engaged external cybersecurity advisors to investigate and assist in the safe restoration of our systems. We have also notified law enforcement.
“We have teams on site who will be working throughout the night to bring our systems back online in a safe and secure manner. While we continue to make progress, this process may continue to take some time. Therefore, the superintendents from Jackson and Hillsdale counties have determined schools will remain closed for tomorrow, Tuesday, November 15, 2022.
“At this time, we continue to ask everyone to refrain from using any school-issued devices. Our technical teams will be providing us updates throughout the day on the progress of restoration. As additional information becomes available, we will provide an update on the status of tomorrow’s afternoon activities. We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused and appreciate your patience and understanding as our technology team works diligently to remediate this issue. Unfortunately, more and more school districts have become victims of ransomware attacks over the past few years, and we are no exception.
“Providing a high quality learning environment for our students is our number one priority and we are doing everything in our power to get them back in their classrooms. Our investigation remains ongoing. We will provide more information as it becomes available..”