Baker Middle School in the Fairborn City School District dealt with its third threat in the last five weeks on Wednesday.
The school was placed on lockdown for more than two hours after a student found a bomb threat on a restroom mirror that said that the school will catch on fire or blow up.
The threat was discovered just after 11 a.m., and the Fairborn Police Department and canines from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base searched the school. Nothing suspicious was found. Classes resumed at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.
Sgt. Paul Hicks of the Fairborn Police Department said the incident is under investigation. School officials said in a press release that they believe it was a prank.
“We will be following every lead to discipline students involved in this incident,” the district said in the release. “Pranks of this nature are serious and could be prosecuted by the law.”
The school district said it will not comment any further on the incident. Superintendent Dave Scarberry did not return a message seeking comment.
Since the lockdown occurred during lunchtime, the students’ schedule was adjusted the remainder of the day. Two lunch sessions took place later than normal.
“I don’t know what’s pushing kids to do this,” Hicks said. “Obviously, it causes a great disruption to their day, and it’s also tying up our resources.”
In late February, two unspecified threats written in pencil were discovered in restrooms, and two students were later identified as the sources of those threats. The two students did not collaborate together on the threats, Scarberry previously said.
Hicks said he is unaware of any charges that have been filed or if the students are attending school. The officer in charge of the investigation is on vacation this week, he said.
“We have to take these threats seriously,” Hicks said. “Because the time we don’t approach it seriously will be the time something happens.”
After the two February incidents, the school district asked parents to speak with their children about writing messages on school property and the seriousness of such vandalism.
Baker Middle School administrators sent letters home to parents regarding new safety measures for students and staff.
They included staff members in the hallways during class changes; students are prohibited from carrying backpacks once the school day starts; each classroom will have a sign-in and sign-out sheet for students; and students are required to have passes if they leave a classroom for any reason.
Baker Middle School has 960 students in grades six through eight.