A bomb scare prompted the evacuation of Onteora High School in the Ulster County hamlet of Boiceville on Thursday, Sept. 22, according to an alert issued by the Ulster County Sheriff's Office.
The alert followed a notice issued by the school to families on Thursday morning, according to parents who shared information about the situation on Facebook.
According to the police alert, "all children have been evacuated from the school and there appears to be no danger at this time." Police are reportedly still investigating the incident.
Staffers answered the phone at the school, but no one was available to immediately answer questions from the Watershed Post.
This is the second bomb scare in the Ulster County Catskills in a week. On September 15, a bomb threat caused an evacuation at the Woodstock Golf Club.
Update, 4:30 p.m.:
Onteora Central School issued a press release this afternoon which contained little new information about the bomb scare and evacuation, aside from the news that a search of the school building by multiple police agencies found no bomb.
The press release announced that after police issued an "all clear" for the Middle School and High School buildings, students resumed normal activities at the school today, and regularly scheduled activities will proceed as normal tonight.
A call to Onteora Central School by the Watershed Post was not returned, and no one picked up repreated phone calls to the school this afternoon.
Read the full press release issued by the school below:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 22, 2016
Onteora High School/Middle School Addresses Bomb Threat
BOICEVILLE—Earlier today, Onteora Middle/High School received a bomb threat. Law enforcement was immediately contacted, the building was evacuated, and parents/guardians were alerted to the situation via Shoutpoint, the District’s electronic notification system. Law enforcement authorities from the New York State Troopers, Ulster County Sheriff’s Department, the Towns of Olive and Shandaken Police, and the New York City Department of Environmental Protection conducted a thorough search of the premises and have determined that no credible threat exists.
After the building search resulted in getting an “all clear” from authorities, students returned and resumed normal activities. Today’s after-school activities, including open house, will continue as scheduled.
The District will continue to work closely with law enforcement officials as the source of the threat is investigated. This occurrence is an excellent opportunity to remind our students and community of the value of “see something, say something.” Anyone with information is urged to contact the school administration, the police, or a trusted adult with details.
“We would like to thank our law enforcement authorities for their prompt response and their ongoing commitment to the safety and security of our students,” said Onteora Superintendent of Schools Bruce Watson.
“We understand that false threats such as this are frightening and disruptive,” he continued. “We will continue to work with law enforcement to ensure the safety and security of our students and staff and to identify the person or persons responsible for this particular incident. I would also to thank the High School and Middle School administration for their good judgment and leadership in the handling of the evacuation as well as the cooperation we received from the staff and students.”