Big Walnut school officials and police are still investigating the source of last week’s bomb threat at Big Walnut High School, according to schools Superintendent Angie Pollock.
Pollock — in an email update to members of the Big Walnut community and during last Thursday’s board of education meeting —also thanked high school and intermediate school administration and staff for their calm demeanor and professionalism in handling the March 14 situation.
“The evacuation and search were based on a note that was found in the restroom by a student,” Pollock’s update stated. “Nothing was found in the searches (which included bomb-sniffing dogs) and we felt very confident that the building and grounds were safe for our high school students to return.”
“We obviously take this very seriously, especially in today’s climate, and continue to work with our staff and students to keep student safety our priority,” Pollock added. “As parents, please consider taking this opportunity to talk to your children about how serious this is, and about the importance of reporting to the administration anything they hear about this situation or about any other potential threat.”
At about 2 p.m. Monday, March 14, Big Walnut High School released students early because of the threat. Pollock said the note found at the high school mentioned potential bombs, including bombs in the high school parking lots.
Buses were called in early for students riding buses, students who walk to and from school were allowed to go home, and students needing rides waited at nearby Big Walnut Intermediate School.
On scene were deputies from the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office, local police officers, BST&G Fire Department personnel, and state and national law enforcement agents.
The school was cleared by police, and Monday evening activities at the high school and nearby intermediate school were canceled.
During last Thursday’s school board meeting, Pollock thanked the high school administrative team and staff for their leadership during the event.
“We had Homeland Security here, U.S. marshals and five bomb-sniffing dogs,” Pollock said. “We appreciate the members of the high school staff and our student body. It’s a testament to our students, they way they reacted; and to our staff, how the situation was handled.”
On Friday, Pollock sent an email update to members of the Big Walnut community on the school district’s notification mailing list.
In the update, Pollock again thanked staff for their calm demeanor and professionalism.
“Our students’ behavior was outstanding and I was extremely proud of their maturity and cooperation,” Pollock wrote. “I would also like to thank our local, state and federal law enforcement officers for their support and quick responses.”
Lenny C. Lepola can be reached at 614-266-6093.