Ohio Schools Face Rise in Bomb Threats, Criticism for Response Plans

One security consultant says Ohio schools should conduct threat assessments before evacuating schools for bomb threats.

Some local officials in Ohio are being criticized for automatically evacuating schools that receive bomb threats.

Following a series of bomb threats that affected schools across the state, the president of a security consultant firm in Cleveland is urging schools to assess the legitimacy of the threat to determine if it is credible or not, according to the Newark Advocate.

RELATED: Bomb Threat Basics

Ken Trump, president of National School Safety and Security Services, said schools should try to determine the credibility of each threat before making the decision to evacuate. Trump said oftentimes school administrators make no security assessments before clearing their schools.

On Oct. 21 alone, seven school districts reported bomb threats in the state. Similarly far-reaching bomb threats were reported on Oct. 7 and Sept. 25, although authorities did not say if any of the threats are related. The Ohio Department of Education, the FBI and Homeland security are investigating the threats.

RELATED: School Bomb Threats Have Nearly Doubled in Mass.

There is no evacuation policy in Ohio, so the decision is left to local officials, who have sometimes taken divergent paths when responding to bomb threats.

Trump says automatically evacuating schools is often playing into the hands of the people making the threats because they want to cause disruptions. He also urged schools to train a team in threat assessment and explain to students the consequences of making threats.

If you appreciated this article and want to receive more valuable industry content like this, click here to sign up for our FREE digital newsletters!

Leading in Turbulent Times: Effective Campus Public Safety Leadership for the 21st Century

This new webcast will discuss how campus public safety leaders can effectively incorporate Clery Act, Title IX, customer service, “helicopter” parents, emergency notification, town-gown relationships, brand management, Greek Life, student recruitment, faculty, and more into their roles and develop the necessary skills to successfully lead their departments. Register today to attend this free webcast!

Get Our Newsletters
Campus Safety Conference promo