• St. Johns County parents call for action after bomb threats

    By: Beth Rousseau , Action News Jax

    Updated:

    Parents in St. Johns County are worried fake bomb threats are cutting into class time.

    Two threats were investigated in just two days at separate schools in the district.

    On Wednesday, students were evacuated from Switzerland Point Middle School when a bomb threat was found written in the bathroom.

    The evacuation happened less than 24 hours after a similar threat was found at Bartram Trail High School.

    Students were released for the day after the bomb threat caused an evacuation just before severe weather was expected to hit the area.

    Parents tell Action News Jax the evacuations have them on edge.

    "It’s frightening. We have to take some of these things seriously, It’s a bomb threat,” Donte Palmer said.

    The St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday that deputies have investigated between 20 and 30 school threats since 17 students were killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. 

    St. Johns County Schools Superintendent Tim Forson sent a message to parents Tuesday promising to crack down on fake school threats.

    Parents say they’ll feel more comfortable once they see action.

    Message from Forson to parents:

    Good Evening Parents and Families,

    The recent tragic events of school shootings have shaken the comfort and confidence of school communities and citizens nationwide. In response, within our school district, we have spent a great deal of time listening to students, parents, teachers and our community members before making final decisions about tactics to enhance safety in our schools.

    Most disappointing has been recent prank messages and statements of bomb threats and school shootings. It is disruptive and endangers the community every single time resources are diverted to respond to fake threats. As a school district we will continue to enforce our disciplinary actions in alignment with our Student Code of Conduct. As your superintendent, I will continue to work with law enforcement agencies to thoroughly investigate these incidents and will encourage prosecution when warranted. I cannot and will not tolerate this selfish, irresponsible behavior.

    While we live in a time of instant news feeds and rapid information, as a school district we must protect the communication related to student information which sometimes includes discipline received. I hope that you will trust in the process and procedures we have in place to deal with these situations and the consequences set forth.

    We must be a community that supports one another and speaks up when we see inappropriate behavior. Lives are being put at-risk because of the poor actions and decisions of others. I encourage you to speak with your children about reporting behaviors that could be threatening to others. I am committed to enhancing safety within our schools and appreciate your continued support in this task.

    Sincerely,

    Tim Forson
    Superintendent

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