Archive for Thursday, December 1, 2011

Nothing suspicious found after bomb threat at Free State; classes to resume on Friday

Students leave Lawrence Free State High School Thursday morning after the administration and Lawrence Police evacuated the building because of a bomb threat. It was reported by some students that a note that mentioned a bomb had been found on a door to the school Thursday morning.

Students leave Lawrence Free State High School Thursday morning after the administration and Lawrence Police evacuated the building because of a bomb threat. It was reported by some students that a note that mentioned a bomb had been found on a door to the school Thursday morning.

December 1, 2011, 8:22 a.m. Updated December 1, 2011, 4:44 p.m.

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Lawrence school district officials said a police search of Free State High School — the target of a written bomb threat Thursday morning — has turned up nothing suspicious.

Classes will resume at the school on Friday, according to Julie Boyle, district spokeswoman. She said after-school and evening activities on Thursday will be held.

Two exceptions:

• The Free State Scholar Bowls meet has been canceled, said Ted Berard, assistant principal.

• The Free State vocal rehearsal also has been canceled.

Boyle said police and school officials searched the building at 4700 Overland Drive and "found nothing that appeared suspicious, out of place or that would pose a threat to the safety and security of the campus."

Free State was evacuated Thursday morning and all classes were canceled after a written bomb threat was discovered.

Free State high bomb threat

Free State High School was evacuated and all classes are canceled Thursday because of a bomb threat. According to Julie Boyle, district spokeswoman, Lawrence police are at the school and are investigating. The bomb threat was in writing and was found this morning, Boyle said. Enlarge video

The district enacted its Crisis Response Plan, Boyle said Thursday morning, and families were notified that classes for the 1,502 Free State students had been canceled for the day.

The Lawrence Indoor Aquatic Center, which is adjacent to Free State, was evacuated at 8:30 a.m. About 20 people were in the pool at the time, and they were instructed to leave immediately.

The pool was scheduled to reopen at 3:30 p.m., with water-related classes conducted by Lawrence Parks and Recreation to continue as scheduled. Area swim swims also are permitted to practice at their scheduled times, but decisions about whether to conduct practice would be left to individual coaches, officials said.

Lawrence police were notified about 7:46 a.m. about the threat, said Sgt. Matt Sarna of the department's public affairs office.

"All students and faculty were safely evacuated from the building as a precautionary measure," Sarna said.

Colin O’Neal, a junior, had shown up for school a few minutes before 9:05 a.m. — just in time for his AP History class to begin — and quickly began wondering why his idling Ford Explorer Sport was one of only about a dozen cars in the parking lot.

He’d left home about 8:45 a.m., where he hadn’t yet received any notification in any official capacity that school had been canceled.

“I’ll probably just go home and play Skyrim,” he said, before driving off.

About one hour and 45 minutes after the official start of school Thursday, some parents were receiving an initial and second automated messaging system recordings from principal Ed West — their first official, direct notifications of the bomb threat. In the second recording, West mentioned "technical problems" and "message glitches" were to blame for the late notice to parents.

Alex Green, a junior, said he had been among many students told about 8 a.m. to leave by a school security guard. He then gathered outside with friends as they waited to find out what was going on.

"It was a little chaotic," he said.

Green wasn't worried about it when he was told to leave.

"I assumed it was a gas leak or something, he said, "so I just went home."

Police urged anyone with information about the bomb threat to call the police department, 832-7650 or Douglas County Crime Stoppers, 843-TIPS (8477). Crime Stoppers does not subscribe to caller ID, and all callers remain anonymous. Tips to the Crime Stoppers hotline can lead to an award of up to $1,000.

More on this story as it develops.

Comments

DRsmith 3 years, 5 months ago

Guess someone didn't want to take that test.

Tammy Copp-Barta 3 years, 5 months ago

The school didn't contact me .. and my kid is already home .. freaked me out!

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

You could easily be more mature with a response to this. KRichards is right. The automated notification system is a bit redundant when the students can easily call the parents and tell them what is going on.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

really with that many students,some may not have phones,or enough time to access one,so if something did happen,i bet you two would say they should have been more aware, idiots!!!

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Just calm down. I got the notification from Mr. West, the principle, and the notification system is glitched to hell today, they had to resend it multiple times before it finally went through.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

im not trying to be mad but multiple times.could have been too late, if it was multiple times.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

It's not his fault either. I believe the system has multiple pathways of importance for various things, snowdays, being used the most, is well ironed out of bugs but a bomb threat? that pathway is not used often so bugs sit there dormant until something like today happens.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

should have already been done . bugs glitches,what other exuses are you going to make

bledsoe60 3 years, 5 months ago

I can tell you, and believe me, I would be someone who would know, that every single student has a phone. There is no one who doesn't by now, because high school pretty much revolves around them. They even get used during class.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

You are wrong there. I don't have a cellphone and I'm in high school.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Not really. I don't have to worry about it being taken away by teachers.

gsxr600 3 years, 5 months ago

Contributing to worthless spam replies

FlintHawk 3 years, 5 months ago

I guess I'm not knowledgeable to understand what the glitch is. We got three robo-calls from Principal Ed West, starting shortly after 8 this morning. The third call came through USD 497 and mentioned technical problems that resulted in some families' not receiving the earlier messages. Why would the system work for some and not others? Ours came on our landline phone rather than our cell phones — would that make a difference?

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

password 3 years, 5 months ago

Several FSHS parents that I work with (including myself) haven't been notified either. Luckily my son was able to get a ride home from school.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Armored_One 3 years, 5 months ago

You contending a high school student can't be home alone?

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

no,sure they can im just saying parents need to be informed.

Tammy Copp-Barta 3 years, 5 months ago

Some kids that don't drive and are dropped off at school and don't necessarily have a ride home .. the kids weren't even allowed to go get their coats and such so may not even have had cell phones to call for a ride ... so yes .. we DID need to be informed so we could do the responsible thing and make sure our kids got home ... you remember what being a responsible parent is ... right?

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Yes, they were allowed to go get their coats. I was able to grab my backpack out of my locker from the center of the school while I was in the commons. As for being informed? Glitchy system. enough said.

charmed3497 3 years, 5 months ago

I'm a student it was crazy the building got evacuated really fast. The scary thing is is that with something written its going to be tricky to track the person down..

SoundMind 3 years, 5 months ago

I just received an automated message from Ed West. I'm sure it takes some time to notify the parents of all 1,500ish students.

SharonLe 3 years, 5 months ago

No notification to us, either. My husband first heard it on 1320 AM. I appreciate the district's response in taking a threat seriously.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

I am a student at freestate. I had no form of transportation home when the evacuation hit. I did have 50 cents so I just took the T. Do you really think that students in high school would not know what to do in this situation? Having students in the high school would just hamper the police efforts in trying to find the bomb if there is one.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

i have three girls who graduated,from freestate,some may not,so the t was there,waiting i think not

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Actually yes, it was. The school district called into the T's command and told them, all three busses that go by freestate diverted from their path to head there and pick up students.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

then the parents should have been called,most could have beat the t.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

They were called, but as I said, and as MR.West said in his automated message, the system was glitched to hell and they had to resend the message multiple times before it got through the glitched system.

JayCat_67 3 years, 5 months ago

Actually, even if you didn't have the fare, the T would not have denied you a ride. You can't make a habit of not paying, but if you are in a pinch, they'll still get you where you need to go.

Mkh 3 years, 5 months ago

Heard it on 1320 KLWN first this morning.

Rick Werner 3 years, 5 months ago

If you didnt get contacted please make sure the school has your current information on file.

ECM 3 years, 5 months ago

School has it did notify any of the contacts they were given

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

It's a high school not an elementary school. Give the students some credit. I myself went there and didn't have a normal way home so I just took the T and I wasn't the only one.

rcr 3 years, 5 months ago

Why couldn't they have just sounded the fire alarm to clear the building, maybe along with an announcement that this wasn't a drill and everyone needed to leave the building. Surely they practice fire alarms, where everyone is required to go to a certain locations outside the building, depending on where your class is. Once in that location the teacher should be verifying that all the students in her class was accounted for. At least that's the way it was long ago when I was still in high school. We actually had to take roll call once we got outside just to verify that everyone was out.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

This was before school even started and as for the fire alarms, let's say the bomb went off, anyone on the side of the building where the bomb went off would be pelted with debris as they only go about 50 feet away from the building at most.

sunflowerhue 3 years, 5 months ago

The problem is that school hadn't started yet so teachers didn't have kids in their classes. Some kids were just arriving to school. During school hours teachers would have taken roll, etc., but class hadn't begun yet.

gl0ck0wn3r 3 years, 5 months ago

Study much crisis managements. Nah, didn't think so.

hcother 3 years, 5 months ago

I wondered about that too. Certainly a bomb threat is a pretty horrible way of dealing with that worry. Just don't attend or grin and bear it. It's a joke to a lot of kids anyway so attending wouldn't have "hurt" them.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

In this case it isn't an option to not attend. It was scheduled to be a mandatory assembly, no option of not going.

hcother 3 years, 5 months ago

Right, so just attend and grin and bear it.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

I personally was going to just bring a book and read throughout the assembly. I'm guessing that it will just be pushed back to next week.

bad_dog 3 years, 5 months ago

Yes and everyone can tweet about how much it blows...

rivercitymom 3 years, 5 months ago

Seriously, there was a mandatory abstinence assembly? Heck, thats the REAL news here. Parents should have been notified about THAT so those of us who believe, in, well, SCIENCE could have kept our kids away from that mumbo jumbo.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Most students had NO idea what the assembly was about. Most thought it was some kind of pep rally or something. Only a very few knew a bit of what it could have been.

JayCat_67 3 years, 5 months ago

I think science has proven that abstinence is the most effective way of avoiding unwanted pregnancy and pesky little STD's. I'd hardly call that "mumbo jumbo". Or are you simply assuming that abstinence is strictly the domain of religious zealots?

Rich Rodgers 3 years, 5 months ago

Actually, you're wrong entirely. What science has shown is that an abstinence only teaching accomplishes is that kids will, on average, have sex a little later (6-12 months) but will have much higher rates of pregnancy and disease when they do. (see Cochrane, Mathmatica or Rosenbaum studies) This isn't a "hunch" or intuition. This is what happens. Those same kids who remain "abstinent" practice higher rates of oral and anal sex. Very very few humans actually practice abstinence. Why do we expect this to work? I'm not even sure this was an abstinence only lecture. It seems more likely that someone would be bombing-mad if they were going to mention education and choices. And finally, the "religious zealots" are a huge reason people don't have good information about this issue.

JayCat_67 3 years, 5 months ago

Please tell me where I said anything about teaching abstinence only. Seriously, I agree with everything you just posted, but I also feel that abstinence should be part of that education. If most of the kids choose to ignore it, so be it. I just find it irritating that if someone says the "A" word, people automatically assume that it involves some sort of religious indoctrination. But, I'm also thinking we've digressed a bit.

SaBrow 3 years, 5 months ago

I am a student and have friends in StuCo and they said it wasn't about abstinence. It was just a rumor. I really don't think the threat was about the assembly. But what they told me could be wrong, its hard to know.

NickR13 3 years, 5 months ago

Doesn't look like they need to go back to HS, just looks like they graduated from Free State.

SharonLe 3 years, 5 months ago

My daughter didn't get to the door -students were pouring out when she arrived. Hmm, I've received every other automated message from the school prior to today, but no call yet. Sounds like evaluation of the building evacuation and response plans are in order.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Evaluation would be reasonable if it was a middle school or lower. Also consider the logistics of sending an automated message to the parents of 1500 students before they got home or before they called home.

Ryan Liston 3 years, 5 months ago

I am a student at Free State and I was talking to my friends in the commons when everyone just started to leave. I didn't know what was going on until my friend who had heard the announcement told me that there was a safety concern and everyone had to leave school. Then my other friend asked me if it was some kind of joke and I thought it might be for a minute, but soon found out that this wasn't the case and left school. A long line of cars was stretched throughout the parking lot and it was hard to get out. Most people were calmly leaving, but some seemed nervous and others were treating it as a joke.

Vaildini 3 years, 5 months ago

It was before school even started. Class had not started. How will they account for all the kids if attendance hadn't been taken yet? Quit being so dramatic. WE MUST CHALLANGE THE SYSTEM. haha These high school kids can find a way home. Be real.

Connie Grimes 3 years, 5 months ago

Great idea! As a parent, then I could ALWAYS know where my kids are.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

krichards i agree finally,merry x mas no hard feelings just opions

Connie Grimes 3 years, 5 months ago

Are you responding to me? Because I am a parent and I was kidding.

SoccerGenius 3 years, 5 months ago

Don't you people know what is important when it comes to these automated announcements, "It's not too late to order your class ring!"

conservative 3 years, 5 months ago

My son goes there. He called his grandparents to get him he also said the announcement over the intercom wasn't clear and sounded like a joke so lots of people stood around. I receive automated messages often from the school but so far no call or email from the school. The district will need to review later what went wrong with their notification systems.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

The announcement wasn't clear because the person giving the announcement, ed west, was frantic to get the students out of the building so that if there was a bomb, then few if any students would be within the blast range. As for a notification system, from the one I got from Mr west, the system has alot of glitches.

KSManimal 3 years, 5 months ago

The message was perfectly clear and delivered very professionally. If kids didn't hear it, it's because they routinely ignore intercom announcements.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

It actually wasn't too clear. He was speaking alot faster than he normally would but the message got passed on by students like me shouting about an evacuation at those in the commons.

Elaine Elliott 3 years, 5 months ago

I thought he handled it very well but I was in a quiet classroom, not the commons.

ECM 3 years, 5 months ago

This is a complete failure of the district and staff of Free State. The whole reason the notification system was put in place was exactly for this reason. Funny they can send out multiple messages about silly things like class rings or other things but no notification of this is unacceptable.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

No, it was a failure on the part of the district, not of free state. Mr. West had no idea that the system would be so bugged up.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

its his watch and responsability.plain simple

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

His watch? Sure he records the message but it's the district's responsibility to get the message sent out to every parent. Free state does not have enough phones to call every parent.

Nikki May 3 years, 5 months ago

I know this is hours late and I tried to ignore it but I have to say this. I know you are a student at free state, you made that abundantly clear. Wait, I also know you were in the commons and love this Ed West. You don't have to be a brown-noser on an anonymous post, just so you know.

But, what I wanted you to know is that the automated calling only uses one phone. The person makes the call ONE time. The call goes out and it goes to everyone at virtually the same time. They don't make 1500 individual calls. It's like when you mass email or mass text. Some get it a bit faster, but still, one call is made.

Andrew Boyd 3 years, 5 months ago

When I attended free state we had a bomb threat I believe that was back in 07 or 08 I'm not sure. That was while dr Snyder was still principal mind you. I recall they locked the building down and did not allow us to move around very much with in the building. So I know that at one time anyways their was a plan in place.

CreatureComforts 3 years, 5 months ago

There was a bomb threat and they made sure you had no way of leaving the building where the supposed bomb was? Sounds like a BAD plan in place, unless I am not understanding...

Toni Shelton 3 years, 5 months ago

I was wondering the same thing myself. Why would they keep you in the building? That does seem like a very bad plan.

cellogrl 3 years, 5 months ago

Same thing happened when I was student-teaching at Topeka High. Their logic was that if it was planted in a locker, they didn't want the kids to walk by and then the bomb goes off. Sounds stupid to me as well. I'd rather get them out of the building and keep as many kids safe as we could.

Andrew Boyd 3 years, 5 months ago

Part of the logic if I recall was that threat was district wide in the first place. Also if I recall back in the late 90's earl 2000s there was a incident were a bomb threat was reported on the east coast and there was a gunman waiting outside the school for the kids when they evacuated.

Nikki May 3 years, 5 months ago

The district wide threat, I remember that. It was a lock down. At all levels. My oldest was in elementary and I made my husband go get her. The school ID'd every adult if they didn't know them.

When I was in jr high (that was the 80s) we had bomb threats and had to stay in our rooms. We couldn't move our desks, couldn't open them. Just sit there. They were worried that it could be triggered by opening doors or desks or whatever. We had to stay where we were until there was an all clear. It's possible that it was motion activated or on a trigger. In high school - different district, they evacuated and made us walk to the national guard armory and wait. I know one of the ones at high school was before school. Buses were diverted and walkers and drivers were sent down the road too. They took roll call. There was a plan for before school though.

Connie Grimes 3 years, 5 months ago

I do think that the fact that school hadn't started played a part in the school's response. Apparently LHS is now on lock down as a precaution, but this wasn't an option with the students at Free State because they were not yet in their 2nd hour class and attendance had not been taken. These are high school students. An evaluation of the school's/district's response will certainly occur and my guess is some changes will be made including an evacuation point where students are accounted for. Just received an automated message from the Principal that there were some glitches with the emergency notification system this morning. I'm sure the school and district will fix these problems as well. I am a firm believer that our educators do have the best interests of our students at heart.

ctrowbridge 3 years, 5 months ago

We have checked on Lawrence High School, and we were told the school is not on lockdown. -Caroline Trowbridge community editor

Connie Grimes 3 years, 5 months ago

Sorry Caroline. Thanks for checking the facts.

RoeDapple 3 years, 5 months ago

I suggest if there is another incident of this nature FSHS should consult LJWorld posters. They always seem to know what should be done.

sportsmom2724 3 years, 5 months ago

Just got my automated call. Honestly, I feel that it took too long, and am interested to know what exactly is the Crisis Plan. Now that we have Freshman in the building, I am afraid many students were stranded without rides and are now roaming free. My next question is will the students have to make up this day?

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

You answer your own question. A bomb threat isn't like a snow day. The message came in late because the system was glitched, you heard that on the message. As for making up the day? No. It would make no sense for the day to have to be made up if it was an evacuation.

somebodynew 3 years, 5 months ago

Well, actually it would make sense to make the day up, IF it is unfounded and a prank or excuse to miss a day. If not you can count on having several more of these.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Ok, even so this would take up the one alotted snow day so it would not need to be made up.

bledsoe60 3 years, 5 months ago

I think we actually get 2 snow days allowed before we make them up

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Due to all the snow days of last year the district cut down the allowed snowdays to one.

Kelly Johnson 3 years, 5 months ago

Which makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. "We didn't have enough snow days built in to the calendar this year...let's cut back for next year's calendar and have even less." It's frightening that this was logical to an entire group of people who approved the calendar

rivercitymom 3 years, 5 months ago

Families need to have their own crisis plans. After 9/11 our family came up with one and we review it every once in awhile. (Where to go and meet if we get separated, etc.) In this case, give your kids a couple plans on what to do if something happens at school -- we have often discussed the possibilty of a mass shooting so believe me I am completely relieved this was JUST a bomb threat. (Perspective, people!) Also, kids were calling, texting and tweating all this at about 8:02 a.m. Communication was NOT cut off in this instance.

Catalano 3 years, 5 months ago

This is just a thought, and I don't know how the automated notifications are set up, but if the entire building needed to be evacuated, then who would be left inside to start the notification process? Assuming it's set up on some computer inside and not on some FSHS employee's cell phone.

PennyBrite 3 years, 5 months ago

I don't believe the school makes that automated notification go out -- probably it comes from the district office. Anyone know?

Brad Greenwood 3 years, 5 months ago

There is most definitely am emergency plan in place and it's practiced. Unfortunately, it's designed for when classes are in session. Before or after school, the students are milling around in the commons where it's noisy and you can't hear the announcements... hence, the chaos of trying to organize an evacuation at that time. During the school day, if there's any bomb threat, the students are immediately and orderly evacuated to designated places away from the building. A lock down occurs ( and is practiced) in case of a possible armed person in the building. That's when the building and classrooms are locked up.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

The evacuation went very smoothly mainly due to students like me shouting that the school was being evacuated and that it was canceled for the day.

gl0ck0wn3r 3 years, 5 months ago

You are so modest and have so much information to offer.

Lisa Rasor 3 years, 5 months ago

No need to be snide, gl0ck -- asaeam was there and the info s/he has is much better than the Monday-morning quarterbacking the rest of us are doing.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Do you realize that the incident happened just 2 hours ago?

monheim 3 years, 5 months ago

Where'd you get your list? I only ask because uhm....it's missing this. Kind of a big one I guess:

Columbine High School, Littleton, Colorado April 20 1999 13 victims (15 deaths if you count the perpetrators)

irvan moore 3 years, 5 months ago

the only reasonable solution is to put together a study group to see if closing another grade school could possibly prevent this type of thing from happening in the future.

dancemomX3 3 years, 5 months ago

People really need to calm down! I have a student at FSHS and she called me (on her cell phone) as soon as it happened to let me know. She is a freshman and she found a ride with one of her older friends. If not, she could have walked or taken the T home. If my high school student is not smart enough to get herself out of the building and home during situations like this, then we have bigger problems on our hands than the glitch in the emergency notification system. I think many of the posters are underestimating the intelligence and self-preservation skills of our teens. The schools do the best they can..its not their fault that the system did not work the way they expected it to. Really people, have some faith in your kids!!

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Thank you, finally some one who thinks as I do. I had no normal ride home during the incident yet I just took the T.

SoundMind 3 years, 5 months ago

Exactly. And the second message I received stated that the gymnasium had been secured and was being used as a staging area for those that did not have rides. Jeebus people, calm down.

Toni Shelton 3 years, 5 months ago

Like you, if anything happened at LHS my daughter would contact me way before the school ever could. And she would be ok, I know that.

overthemoon 3 years, 5 months ago

exactly. If kids have gotten to that age without some sense of how to handle themselves, the parents haven't done their job very well.

Now, recalling what we would have done with a sudden free day back in our HS days might put a little bit of worry in our heads...but we lived through it!!

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

Just think of what the students do on a weekend, that's what they will do today.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

you know what? forget I said anything.

KSManimal 3 years, 5 months ago

I bet the folks griping about the notification system not working are the same folks who gripe about providing public schools the finances that would allow them to invest in a more reliable system. Just sayin.

sunflowerhue 3 years, 5 months ago

I was at Free State this morning and it was NOT chaos and the voice on the intercom was NOT frantic. Geesh. They simply announced that we were enacting our crisis response plan and b/c it might be unsafe, students needed to leave the building and go home AND that if they did not have a ride, they could go to the gym where teachers were told to meet. Teachers waited around to make sure students were out of the hallways, some kids went to lockers to get their coats, etc. Of course everyone wondered what in the world was going on, but there was no panic. Frankly, I'm glad they got kids and teachers out before sending the message. They got kids out quickly while working out the problems with the call system, got word to the radio, sent the T's, contacted the buses and most kids have cell phones or friends with cell phones so that they could call if they needed to.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

I'm surprised that it went so smoothly though. Luckily they didn't mention a bomb threat or it would have gotten chaotic.

tsmjcc 3 years, 5 months ago

just glad there was no oe hurt asaeam,i have a son who goes there,i was a little afraid and may have over reacted,he called me about it first,said he was not sure what was up,again glad evrything is good, merry xmas.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

If anything it's a good thing the evacuation happened. Those leaving the school were able to tell those comming in what was going on.

bad_dog 3 years, 5 months ago

Given the gym was an assembly point for students needing a ride, hopefully no person ever actually plants a bomb there.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

You were IN school though at the time. When this happened it was about 5 minutes before class started so there was no way to know if anyone snuck off.

ezbreezy 3 years, 5 months ago

No need for a police investigation, the person (student) who wrote the note will eventually brag about it in the next few days if not, today. Knowing the "smart" kids we have here, I would even bet that somebody has video of the perp, and is showing somebody right NOW!

MarcoPogo 3 years, 5 months ago

For those that missed it:

1) The phone system wasn't up to snuff.

2) Asaeam took the T home.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

You forget there is now a $1000 reward for any information on the threat.

MarcoPogo 3 years, 5 months ago

Any information? That's going to cost them a lot of money.

mdab1609 3 years, 5 months ago

Yes! Finally someone who clarified that Asaeam took the T home!!!

Betty Bartholomew 3 years, 5 months ago

When I was in high school at PLHS about 17 years ago, we had a fajita day for lunch. Apparently somebody got tired of waiting in line and called in a bomb threat from the pay phone. I'm not sure what they thought that would accomplish other than causing a lot of people to not get lunch that day. We were all immediately herded out to the football field and not allowed to leave - by car or by bus - until after the police and dogs had been through and checked the school and all vehicles on the premises, which took most of the afternoon.

Which is the long way of saying it's super-annoying when some bored kid thinks a bomb threat would be a good prank.

conservative 3 years, 5 months ago

A "glitchy" emergency system is unacceptable. Today they need to worry about clearing the threat, tomorrow they need to launch an investigation on what went wrong with the emergency systems. If the problem is with the system itself the company that installed it needs to be brought out to get it fixed. If it was human error that needs to be identified so that person or those persons can be retrained properly.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

How often is it that there is a bomb threat in Lawrence? How often does a principal have to send out an automated message through the district about the threat? You need to just calm down and be glad no one got injured.

bledsoe60 3 years, 5 months ago

God you underestimate us. I quickly, and very easily, found a ride home. It's not like it was mass hysteria or anything along those lines.

Christine Pennewell Davis 3 years, 5 months ago

I understand we are talking about high school kids most have cell phones and friends that can give them a ride home. That being said what if this had happened at a middle school or elem. school? My middle school child does not have a phone yet, how would she call me if the system was not working right like today? The idea that she would be sitting there scared until I found out from the news and showed up to get her is not at all acceptable to me nor should it be to anyone else. Yes systems go funny sometimes but really during a potential emergancy is not the time to find out it does not work right.

asaeam 3 years, 5 months ago

They would have a plan for them that is very more rigid in terms of order. Middle school and below would probably keep the students in a certain area while getting transportation for them.

bledsoe60 3 years, 5 months ago

You need to think her how many times they actually have to use that thing. It's completely understandable that it would have bugs. It's just a high school. And the solution to that whole "My kid doesn't have a cell phone, what if this happens to her?" Get your kid a cell phone. It was the whole basis for inventing them, so they could be used in an emergency. Don't think up the worst cae scenario and start "What if"ing. Odds are it'll never happen to you.

Eddie Muñoz 3 years, 5 months ago

I wonder if they said the same thing about fire alarms.

They should have regular tests of this system so that bugs can be found before there's an actual emergency.

kuguardgrl13 3 years, 5 months ago

My guess is they would have a different response with elementary or middle school children. When a bomb threat occurred at my middle school in 2003, we were bused to the high school and sat in the auditorium for the rest of the day. Same thing happened when the power went out at my elementary school in 98, and the backup generators didn't kick in. It's different with high school kids since a good number of them have cars. It was also before classes were in session, so the students were not in their classrooms. I'm sure the junior highs have a system in place to manage their students, especially now that 6th graders are there. They would either bus the kids to another school (probably LHS or Free State) or load them on the buses to go home if possible. Same thing with elementary. My guess is they didn't want 1500 kids milling around campus with police trying to work and the media hovering. They couldn't exactly squeeze all of Free State in the LHS gym.

Christine Pennewell Davis 3 years, 5 months ago

Well for some odd reason I do not think a 6th grader or below needed a cell phone none of her older sisters had one at that age call me old fashioned, she does not have a facebook page or internet accses in her room it is all about age and what I think is right. But I still stand by my statement about finding out that the system is flawed during the emergency is not good timing.

bledsoe60 3 years, 5 months ago

My 9 year old cousins have phones and i've had one since 5th grade. I don't see why parents think their children should be a certain age before they can call them for emergencies. And no facebook or internet, that's cruel. You're depriving your kids of the social experience of life.

grammaddy 3 years, 5 months ago

And how many times do kids have to make those kinds of emergency calls? None of the kids in this house will have cell phones until they have jobs to pay for them. It amazes me what parents believe a child absolutely has to have.Step up the parenting.

bledsoe60 3 years, 5 months ago

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Mark Currie 3 years, 5 months ago

I taught at LHS for years. We didn't even have a "notification" system. Everyone is bitching about the glitch etc. etc. How about being thankful you don't have a bunch of injured & worse kids to deal with? From what I saw of HS students, they can figure out a way to get away from school.

JayCat_67 3 years, 5 months ago

Often when they're not even supposed to be getting away...

gl0ck0wn3r 3 years, 5 months ago

Most of these comments are so lulzworthy that they don't merit serious consideration. However, everyone who freaked out last week about the police being properly equipped for large, infrequent events - in that case, buying appropriate weapons - ought to evaluate your response to this situation. Crisis management, planning and equipment cost money and the same people who complain about spending that money are frequently the same people who complain that authorities were unprepared to deal with foreseeable, if infrequent, events.

Christine Pennewell Davis 3 years, 5 months ago

No not really my girl experiences life thru living and interacting with people not facebook at 11 or getting to get on any web page she wants with out supervision. I am sure you remember going out running around your yard and friends coming over doing the same thing, you know real live human beings you can touch and play with and have sleep overs with. And yes I do think children should be of a certain age for some things never knew why parents let their 6 year olds have cell phones. And she does get on the internet just in the living room where she can be supervised.

JayCat_67 3 years, 5 months ago

Here's an option. Test the system occasionally. Maybe at the beginning of each semester, put out a call that states "This is only a test". Just a thought.

jerseygirlinks 3 years, 5 months ago

I was also at Free State and everything was calm and well-orchestrated. There was no panic at all. If your child is in High School, they should be able to handle leaving a school safely and making arrangements to get home. For most of these students, walking was a very simple option. While we didn't receive notification by the district until later, I still have full faith in the capability of the teachers and staff to make sure all the students were safe. Good job Free State Staff!

Elaine Elliott 3 years, 5 months ago

I like how they interviewed the kid that was an hour late for school.

CrumpN 3 years, 5 months ago

I got a call from a teacher canceling our meeting for today because of this way before a auto call came in. Then I only recieved one, after my son was already home and back in bed sleeping. Personally I am ok with the school waiting to call us til the kids are out of harms way. We certainly don't need alot of frantic parents rushing to the school, clogging up traffic. What if there really was a bomb and no one could get away from the building? About the cell phones our kids have... I do not allow my son to take his cell to school. School is for learning, there are phones there if he needs to get ahold of me.

Amy Bartle 3 years, 5 months ago

I received an automated message a few minutes ago that said afternoon activities are on schedule. This includes the basketball scrimmage later today.

PennyBrite 3 years, 5 months ago

question: if the police knew about it at 7:46, why were kids even allowed to enter the building after that?

Christine Pennewell Davis 3 years, 5 months ago

Well now that it is over I will say this, who ever left the note did not think very straight should have done it on a friday so they could have a three day weekend. Ok ok not funny but you know some of the kids are saying the same thing. On the parent side I say shame on you you should not behave in this way you wasted alot of peoples time and money just for a day off of school. To the school board please work on the alert system and I hope you never have to use it again.

DRsmith 3 years, 5 months ago

And a written note? Look at the freshmen first. I would hope upper classmen would be smarter than that.

bledsoe60 3 years, 5 months ago

You have no perception of high scool today do you? Upper classmen are the ones that act dumb, don't be so quick to judge freshmen >¦(

kernal 3 years, 5 months ago

This sounds like a classic Senior's prank.

Whoever did this I hope you're not counting on a scholarship after graduation. Not sure if the military will take you either, as you've just mapped out your life as a big loser.

kuguardgrl13 3 years, 5 months ago

When we had a bomb threat at my middle school, the kid was expelled. This kid should probably tell his college he won't be attending in the fall if he applied anywhere.

Ryan Liston 3 years, 5 months ago

What I want to know is what exactly the note said?

Spagett 3 years, 5 months ago

I'm a FS student, and came in early at 7 to work on a project. I didn't notice anything particularly weird going on. The only thing out of the ordinary today (besides the evacuation) was a scheduled assembly for a "motivational speaker". The only thing that immediately comes to mind as far as WHY there was a threat is the amount of kids complaining about no late arrival, and not wanting to hear the speaker. It'd be really stupid to put up a bomb threat because someone doesn't want to sit through a twenty minute assembly, but then again, I know a lot of really stupid kids. The evacuation announcement happened between 7:55 and 7:57am. He didn't say what the emergency was, he basically just said "Get your crap and get out." It was only until word of mouth spread that most knew it was a bomb threat.

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