Hammarskjold High School, a secondary school located in Thunder Bay, Ontario, was closed down for the 12th time this year on Tuesday after receiving yet another anonymous threat. According to a report by CBC, the Hammarskjold High School threats have happened 14 separate times in roughly two months. The constant threats and closures have students and their families at their breaking point.
Over 200 residents gathered to discuss the issue of the threats on Tuesday during a meeting at Christ Lutheran Church. The meeting, which was put together by the Hammarskjold school council was essentially an information session. However, it offered little answers to the frightened and concerned parents who remain desperate for them.
"Fourteen threats have been made against our school in the last nine weeks. That's 11 full school day closures, two hold and secures with police, and one full lockdown," explained Cheri Lappage, school council chair of Hammarskjold, to the CBC.
"Twice our students have been subject to sweeps that involve the swat team. For all of us, this situation has gone beyond the point of frustration. This is absolutely maddening," she continued.
Several concerns were raised during the meeting included the effect of the threats on prom and other celebratory traditions, which may get cancelled as the possibility of more threats continues to loom. Fears and frustrations were also raised about the school's lack of communication with the families and the detrimental impact of the constant closures on students to whom English is a second language.
As a result of the constant closures and threats, students have been assigned coursework online opposed to the classroom, which many believe could be an issue for international students who rely on the aid of teachers and the classroom setting to learn.
Students from foreign countries weren't the only ones struggling from the shift to learning online. Special needs students and their families will also concerned that the wavering safety of the school could be harmful to their children.
At this time, Hammarskjold has no plans to extend its school year to accommodate for the flood of closures due to threats, CBC reports.