A nationwide epidemic of violent school threats is breeding fear, anxiety and frustration for educators, children and parents. While the vast majority of these threats are anonymous and turn out to be hoaxes, they have to be investigated and taken seriously. Hundreds of schools are losing classroom teaching time, police are wasting resources, children are frightened, and parents are angry and alarmed.
“School threats are a fast growing problem. They send fear and panic through a community” says IAPSC member Ken Trump, President of National School Safety and Security Services in Cleveland, who directed the study of threats across the country.
Trump and his communications strategist reviewed 812 school threats across the country, from August 1 to December 31, 2014 – the first half of this school year. Based on available data, threats are up 158% since last year, when they did the first survey of this kind. More than 70% of the threats involved bomb threats and/or school shooting threats.
Nearly 30% of the schools evacuated their schools, oftentimes prematurely and unnecessarily. Almost 10% of schools actually closed. The costs of these threats include lost instructional time, thousands of dollars in first responder time, and widespread parental and community anxiety.
Find more information on the study here: www.schoolsecurity.org/2015/02/study-finds-rapid-escalation-violent-school-threats/