The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

Emailed bomb threats close multiple local schools

Ben Madanski
Our Lady of Assumption School received one of many emailed bomb threats, resulting in evacuation of the campus and any other surrounding buildings and institutions. Local authorities remained to “conduct patrol checks at local schools throughout the day.” To help accommodate these events, Webb’s student handbook contains more information on how these situations should be handled by students and faculty. 

Despite October already being a spooky season, the students of Lady of Assumption School and Damien High School were additionally frightened by the emailed bomb threats sent to them on October 16th, 2023. As reported by an ABC 7 news article, this wave of emails caused classes to be canceled for the day.  

Government officials began investigations to find who the offenders were. Consequently, other surrounding schools were also evacuated and closed for the day. The Webb Canyon Chronicle reached out to these schools; however, they did not answer to an email requesting more information. Local authorities have traced these emails from a sender overseas but have deemed these threats not discernible and claimed that they should be disregarded.  

In response to the rapid increase in school-related incidents, schools have adapted their security measures and have held more lockdown drills. This increase has been most prevalent in K-12 schools, with a dramatic increase of security cameras, the installation of schoolwide notification security systems, and additional requirements for visitors. Some local schools’ danger plans for local schools entail protocols for such events:  

  • Bomb threats 
  • Earthquakes 
  • Intruders/solicitors 
  • Weapons/assault/hostages 
  • Explosions  

Webb regularly practices lockdowns and trains faculty to help prevent any confusion in case of any of these mishaps. 

“[Webb] has this whole organizational system … it’s a pretty extensive emergency plan,” said Dr. Theresa Smith, Head of Schools.  

Page 34 of Webb’s student handbook expands more on the precautions students must take amid a minor or major event. It also provides more in-depth procedures for other events such as fires, active shooters, earthquakes, and other wildlife events. Students are always encouraged to talk more about security concerns with other faculty members or security personnel. Webb has also taken other measures to ensure campus security. 

“We have some security cameras that are guarding our perimeter, and some security cameras that have been put in for wildlife monitoring,” Dr. Smith said.  

This graphic provides an understanding of how schools have improved security around public K-12 schools. (Pew Research Center)

On July 27, 2022, Pew Research Center released an article analyzing federal government data to gauge the security measures of public K-12 schools within the United States, in addition to the adoption of many other protocols. This data reflects upon other survey data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) and their survey about school crime and safety. In attempts to help bolster school security, public K-12 schools reported having a threat assessment team onsite throughout the 2019-20 school year. Stated in a article written by Donna Michaelis, Director of Virginia Center for School and Campus Safety and Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services, “When we analyzed the data further, less than 1% of the 14,869 reported threats actually resulted in a related act being carried out… We believe that’s a pretty good success rate for our teams.” 

With school tragedies on the rise, Webb has been active in constantly updating and monitoring its campus to help protect students and faculty alike from such bomb threats. As a place where young adults and scholars are meant to feel safe and secure, schools around the country must be constantly active in ensuring the safety of everyone within their campuses.  

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Ben Madanski
Ben Madanski, Staff Writer
The ability to visualize a swing plays a crucial role in the game of golf. Practicing this skill as a varsity golf player at Webb, Ben Madanski (‘26) applies such clarity and confidence to life. Though mostly spent in his home in Claremont, Ben’s summer was nevertheless fulfilling as he took a course on AP Chemistry, a subject avoided by many, simply because it is fun to create chemical reactions. Ben applies his problem-solving skills to debate as well on the Webb team. Contrary to his calm demeanor, Ben argues passionately in heated debates to practice the skill of using logic to persuade others. When he is not busy solving chemical equations or winning debates, he enjoys shopping with a small group of friends as he prefers the intimacy of a small friend group. Joining the WCC as a staff writer this year, he hopes to bring attention to climate change protests. As a debater, Ben stands behind a logical persuasion of beliefs and not the hindrance to everyday life that Ben believes to happen in many such protests, such as blocking traffic to capture attention. No matter what, Ben does not succumb to the pressures of life and takes his swing exactly as he envisions.    Song: "From the Start" – Laufey 

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