• Metal detectors to be used after second threat at Mandarin High School, principal says


     The principal of Mandarin High School told parents and guardians Friday morning of another possible threat made for the school. 

    In a voicemail message, Principal John Kniseley ​​​​​​said school officials received a text exchange in reference to a possible school shooting.

    Here is the full voicemail message to parents:

    "Good morning Mandarin High School parents and guardians, this is Principal Kniseley calling. I regret that I have to interrupt your morning with news about another possible threat to our school.

    "We have received a text exchange from a student that suggests a possible shooting.

    "While the investigation into the threat continues, the source of the threat has not been identified or located at this time.

    "Therefore, we will be using metal detector wands to search all students as they enter the building this morning. We have no plans at this time to evacuate the building or anything of that nature based on the information currently available to us.

    "I do want to express my appreciation to the student who shared this information with authorities. Students play an important role in maintaining a safe school community, and I am thankful for the way Mandarin students are responding to these difficult situations. 

    "I can fully understand the impact these situations are having on you and your children. If you choose to be absent today, please know that with parent or guardian permission, it will be considered an excused absence. 

    "Thanks for your attention and I do look forward to getting back to a normal school routine as quickly as possible."

    Metal detector wands will be used to search all students as they enter the building Friday, according to the voicemail message. 

     "We have no plans at this time to evacuate the building, or anything of that nature based on the information currently available to us," the principal said. 

    The second threat comes a day after a bomb threat at the school, which forced students to evacuate the building and sit in 91-degree heat for hours.  

    Action News Jax reporter Courtney Cole spoke to a parent who believes some stronger action needs to be taken by the district to prevent this from happening again.

    "Today is just pure frustration because this is ridiculous,” said Anthony Edwards.

    Anthony Edwards told Action News Jax Friday was his second consecutive day he's had to take off work to pick his daughters up from Mandarin High School.

    Throughout the morning parents arrived to pick-up their kids after a robo-call informed them about a possible shooting threat at the school.

    "Whoever thinks this is funny, it's not funny. They're diluting the seriousness of the situation,” Edwards said.

    Desiré Jordan also had to pick her grandson up yesterday following the bomb threat investigation.

    "I think they're probably related from yesterday and today but it's like, catch 'em!” exclaimed Jordan.

    It's not just parents who want DCPS to get down to the bottom of this.

    James Wolf, a senior at Mandarin High School, told Action News Jax the classrooms were practically empty today because of it.

    “We're all still here and there's like four kids in every class today. No point in being here,” said Wolf.

    Students who did show up to school had to go through security before they could enter.

    "We all got a whole backpack searching today, everyone. The last two days we've all been searched and patted down before we could come onto campus,” Wolf told Action News Jax.

    Edwards told Action News Jax he believes holding parents accountable would help stop this from happening so often.

    "If the parents realized they'd be in as much trouble as their children were for making this threat, they'd probably have a tighter grip on these kids."

    The Duval County School District confirmed with Action News Jax that the homecoming dance is still scheduled for Saturday. 

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