Skiatook Schools Reflects On Response To Potential Threat
SKIATOOK, Oklahoma - Skiatook Public Schools is reflecting on its response after a false report of a shooting on campus sent people into a panic.
They say a student overheard a conversation then texted his parents. Social media then spread the panic quickly.
This is the second Green Country School to go on lockdown in less than a week for a potential threat on campus.
Now administrators are just thankful the threat wasn't real and are seeing if there's anything they can improve upon.
"Because of different situations around the country, obviously we want to take every precaution possible," said Neuman Middle School Principal Steve Cantrell.
Cantrell says a student in the school thought he overheard a threat and texted his parents, who then suggested he go to administrators.
“Student did everything exactly like we would want him to, but then he took it a step further and sent a group message to some individuals that were not affiliated with the school or his parents,” said Cantrell.
Cantrell says this message sparked a Facebook post, which sent people into a panic.
“From there social media took it and ran with it all the way to the point that we had shots fired in the middle school,” said Cantrell.
Skiatook Police dispatched several officers, and the district went on lockdown.
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Even though the threat wasn't credible, administrators are happy the student spoke up.
"If you see something or hear something out of the ordinary, come let an adult know," said Cantrell.
Cantrell says this lockdown gave the district the opportunity to figure out how it would respond in a real emergency and also made Cantrell think about how schools would lock down the cafeteria.
“It happened at a worst-case scenario in the fact that we had about 280 kids at lunch time,” said Cantrell. “We went through immediately trying to figure out how we would lock them down and get them out of the cafeteria.”
Cantrell says the district was also able to use this situation to talk to students and parents about how fast false information can spread.
“We want them to be in contact with their parents, we want them to let their parents know what’s going on, but we don’t want the dis-information out there,” said Cantrell.
Cantrell says the district sent a message out to parents to let them know the threat wasn't credible.
“We tell our kids whenever they hit the front door of our school we want them in a frame of mind to learn and if anything keeps them from that frame of mind we need know about it,” said Cantrell.