Statement re: evacuation on Friday, Dec. 1

Dear Monticello Community,

Earlier today, I received a generalized bomb threat in my email. While it was later determined to be a threat sent to many school districts nationally, we activated our school emergency response plans out of an abundance of caution, which called for the evacuation of all schools. Law enforcement was immediately notified and along with assisting in the evacuation and reunification, they also swept our schools with K9 units. They have determined that all schools are safe for re-entry, and we expect all schools to be open and operating on schedule on Monday. Counselors will be available for any student in need of support.

Though this threat was ultimately determined to be a hoax, I was not willing to risk harm to any student or staff member by keeping them in school, and without conducting sweeps of our schools. I am grateful to our families for their patience today, as our staff worked diligently to ensure more than 2,700 students made it home safely under stressful conditions.

While our safety plans are meticulously detailed for situations like these, we have identified a few areas to improve evacuations and reunifications in the future.  These occasions compel us to trial our plans and reflect on their effectiveness.  Our administrators will be debriefing on Monday.

I ask that you join me in recognizing the hard work of our staff members, who provided our students and community members with support and grace during the reunification process. I am also grateful for the prompt response and work of our law enforcement partners, and our local reunification sites for access to their grounds and facilities.

Thank you, again, and please enjoy your weekend. 

With Monti Pride,
Matthew T. Evans, Ed. D.
Superintendent of Schools
Monticello Central School District