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Thorndale ISD cancels classes Wednesday over threats made on social media

The district said cancelling classes will give officials more time to thoroughly check facilities and further investigate the threats.

THORNDALE, Texas — Thorndale ISD has announced it is cancelling classes Wednesday after reports of threats made on social media. According to school leaders, the threat was reportedly made by a 12-year-old that is not a student at the district.

In a letter to parents, students and staff, Superintendent Adam Ivy said the district received screenshots of a threat made against Thorndale ISD. The threat was communicated with a student on Snapchat who then reported it to their parents, who communicated with district staff.

Ivy said the person who made the threats is unknown at this time. Thorndale ISD has been in contact with local and regional law enforcement to try to determine the identity of the person making the threats so the district can determine its safest course of action.

"While we hope that the threatening comments turn out to be empty, we must take any threats seriously to ensure the safety of our students and staff," Ivy said. "As of 5 a.m., we have not received any new information from law enforcement, so we have decided that, in an abundance of caution, we will cancel school for the day."

Ivy said cancelling classes will allow the district to thoroughly check facilities and further investigate the threats locally, as well as give law enforcement more time to investigate.

Ivy said the district intends for students to return to school on Thursday. The Grandparents' Day breakfast scheduled for Wednesday has been postponed to Thursday, and any grandparents who have already scanned their IDs will not need to do so again on Thursday. 

Ivy said the district will evaluate the possibility of afternoon activities as it gathers more information throughout the day Wednesday.

"Please know that we never want to cancel school if we can help it and that we will use this experience to plan for potential emergencies so that we can hopefully work to avoid canceling in the future," Ivy said.

These threats to Thorndale ISD come one day after several Texas schools dealt with threats that all turned out to be false:

Pflugerville ISD's Connally High School was "placed on hold" Tuesday after police received a report of a shooter on campus, and Eanes ISD's Cedar Creek Elementary was placed in a "secure" protocol Tuesday as authorities responded to an anonymous phone call with a "vague threat."

In Houston, a fight at Heights High School led to false reports of shots being fired. In Waco, police responded to a false report of an active shooter at Waco High School.

A second letter was released to guardians and staff on Wednesday:

Dear parents, students and staff,

As you know, we decided to close school today due to a safety concern originating from a social media communication with one of our students. First I would like to say that I am very impressed that our student recognized a potentially dangerous situation and was brave enough to capture the images and report it to their parents so that it could be sent to us.  

I am pleased to report that the Thorndale Police Chief, Scott Roberson along with Milam County Sheriff's deputies and members of several other agencies were onsite early this morning and worked to clear our buildings using trained K9 units. Additionally, The Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigation Division was able to trace the address of the person making the threats even though they used a false name. The person in question was a twelve year old but was not a student at Thorndale ISD and it was determined by the responding police that there was no intention of carrying out any threats. Regardless of intention, authorities take this very seriously and we feel confident that there will be serious consequences involved.  

I would like to thank this community for your support in this matter. We had many messages thanking us for putting the safety of our kids first. I can honestly say that our leadership team always considers the best interests of our students in every decision that they make and this was no different. I am so blessed to work with such selfless leaders. I also need to thank our board member, Mr. Chad Martinka, who was on the phone with me after midnight and before 5:00 am to help us get access to all of the law enforcement resources that we needed. We never like to close school but we feel that today allowed us to learn things that we can use to make our campuses safer in the future. 

As of now, we feel that it is safe to return to school and  we are planning to have classes as usual on Thursday. We will go ahead with our grandparent’s day breakfast that was scheduled for today. All school sponsored activities have been canceled for today. 

Thank You,
Adam Ivy - Superintendent

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