No bomb found at Eastern York Middle School

Alyssa Jackson
  • The school was evacuated at 11:58 a.m. Tuesday.

Officials at Eastern York Middle School evacuated the school building just before noon Tuesday upon discovering a written bomb threat.

Fire police block a road near Eastern York Middle School after the school was evacuated because of a written bomb threat discovered there Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2016. Dawn J. Sagert photo

The school announced the evacuation on its website, and the Lower Windsor Township Police Department was called to the scene at 12:46 p.m., according to a release from the department. The middle schoolers were taken to the Eastern York High School Performing Arts Center.

In a later news release, Principal Keith Shoemaker said that the bomb threat was written on a piece of paper that was found.

This Sept. 20, 2016 file photo shows an officer outside Eastern York Middle School after the school was evacuated because of a written bomb threat discovered there that day. Dawn J. Sagert photo

Shoemaker said in students were evacuated and each one was accounted for within 10 minutes of evacuating the building, and police were called immediately.

"We practice our safety procedures regularly, and we are very pleased with how smoothly we were able to evacuate and with our ability to account quickly for the safety of everyone in our charge," Shoemaker wrote.

At 4 p.m., the police department said no bomb had been found, and the district said middle school students could enter the building to gather their belongings until 6 p.m. on Tuesday.

The district said in a release on its website that the students did not need to worry about homework Tuesday evening. Quizzes and tests for the following school day were canceled, but school would be in session on the Wednesday following the evacuation.

During the evacuation, the district decided not to dismiss students early. Parents were not required to pick up their children, although they had the option to do so.

The threat is under investigation, and Shoemaker said that the district will punish the individual responsible for the note in addition to any police response. Per law, the punishment will be private once the individual is found.

"Our students behaved admirably, which made it possible for us to do our jobs efficiently, for us to evacuate the building calmly and for us to support police with investigating the threat," Shoemaker said in the  release.