"First time anything crazy has happened": Students react to bomb scare at Willard Middle School
Scary moments at an Ozarks middle school Thursday morning.
Students at Willard Middle School were cleared out after a potential bomb scare.
The Springfield Fire Department Regional Bomb Squad was called to check out a small thermos that one student said had a chemical bomb inside. It took about an hour for the 'all clear' to be given.
These types of incidents seem to be occuring more often.
It's getting kids to talk more about how to stop it from happening at all.
"It's normally a calm, pleasant, peaceful school," said middle school student, Logan Davidson.
That was until emergency crews were called to the school to check out a possible threat.
"This is really, like, the first time anything crazy has happened. I knew that the staff could get everybody out safely," explained Davidson.
Cory Moore, also a student at Willard Middle School said, "Miss Shikany and all my other teachers, they were really good at this.
Assistant Superintendent, Derrick Hutsell asked Moore, "You felt safe didn't you?"
"Yeah," replied Moore.
"One of the things we've done a better job with is with students," explained Hutsell.
Staff let the kids know exactly what was happening as they moved them across the street to Willard High School.
"We've tried to make sure our students were aware of what our safety plans were as well, to make sure they know what to do as well in those
situations," explained Hutsell.
Some students told us they were a bit nervous, even scared. However, administrators explained that the staff is well-trained for these situations.
"Dealing with more of these situations, we get to figure out better ways to handle those and make sure the kids know what's going on. That's the key in all of that too. We don't want students to feel unsafe or scared coming to school," said Hutsell.
The kids told us it was business as usual when they returned to class. They explained that they aren't afraid to go to school. Hutsell believes it's because the school staff talks about violence and safety in schools often.
"In dealing with these things they are a very serious matter as well. We don't want students to take those things lightly," he said.
Students at Willard Middle School say they take these situations seriously.
"If you're going to hurt innocent people, there's no real reason to. They've done nothing to you and really don't need to get involved in any trouble you're having," said Davidson.
Moore said, "Go to a counselor. Talk to your parents, teachers. There's some good teachers here at Willard Middle School."
"It'll end up fine in the end," said Davidson.
The parents of Willard Middle School students were notified about what was happening immediately through emails and phone calls.
The student involved was identified. The situation will be handled according to district policy.
Administrators urge parents to talk to their kids about this very topic often.
Conflict resolution information is offered to all students through school counselors.