NORTH VERSAILLES, Pa. (KDKA) — Students and parents can expect increased security at schools in the East Allegheny District until Friday after a threat.
Superintendent Alan Johnson says a group of 9th and 10th graders allegedly made a violent threat against the high school.
The school district says that North Versailles Township Police were notified of a threat made on Snapchat overnight, but police don’t have any evidence and believe it has minor credibility.
In a message shared on the district’s Facebook page, Johnson says that there will be an increased security presence, including the presence of police officers.
Johnson says that while the threat was made against the Junior/Senior High School, security will be increased at Logan Elementary as well. They also had metal detectors and checked bags before students went to their classrooms.
Many parents are still worried about their children and unhappy with the late notice from school leaders. Some say they didn’t receive a phone call about the threats and extra police presence until their children were already on the bus or at school.
“I have siblings here that are scared to come to school for the simple fact of what’s going on here,” said Miguel Parkinson. “The school is contacting you last second.”
“I had no idea. I thought I was just bringing my son to school on a normal day,” said Summer Johnson, who has a child in the elementary school. “They need to get a little bit better at letting the parents know what’s going on.”
However, the superintendent says if they had more and clearer information earlier, they would have told parents sooner.
“I suppose it’s easy to Monday morning quarterback that,” said Johnson. “We didn’t have a lot of information, and the information we did have pointed in a different direction in terms of the time. So, that is what we acted with. Had we known everything we probably would have done one earlier than that.”
Johnson says parents will be notified Tuesday about the extra security. He understands if parents want to leave their children home for the rest of the week. He says at least 10 students left early with their parents.
Some parents are also concerned about the number of fights that have occurred at the school so far this year.
School records show since last Friday, there have been seven fights involving 28 students at the high school. There have been five fights involving 14 students at the elementary school.
Johnson says they are being proactive to keep students safe and looking for solutions, including disciplining the students, holding hearings and offering support.
Johnson says that a further update will be issued once all students have safely arrived to school.
Stay with KDKA for more on this developing story.