Two and a half hours after students at Cambridge Elementary and Central Kings Rural High School were placed under lockdown, the precaution was lifted and two people were arrested.
RCMP confirmed that two young persons were arrested without incident, nowhere near the schools. Police say it is too early to determine if criminal charges will be laid. The investigation is continuing.
Nova Scotia RCMP’s Sgt. Alain LeBlanc confirmed at 12:40 p.m. that officers were called to the Cambridge schools after a threat was received by a high school student nearly an hour earlier. He could not say what the nature of the threat was.
“This relates to a student that received a threat… in the form of a text,” LeBlanc said.
A release issued by the RCMP indicated the text was received at approximately 11:55 a.m.
“We don’t believe the suspect is on school property. That’s what we’re trying to confirm. We’re trying to assess any threat."
Parents were told not to come to the site.
“We’re taking this very seriously. Our goal right now is ensuring safety.”
RCMP had several resources at the schools and a police service dog was called in to assist with the investigation. Police do not believe the suspects ever entered the school property.
The Annapolis Valley Regional School board explains a “lockdown” is a response where students and staff isolate themselves behind locked doors and contact police.
As of 1 p.m., students were in a “hold and secure” situation and classroom routines had returned. A hold and secure involves locking all external entrances to the building and controlling access to the site while allowing internal activities to continue.
Both lockdown and hold and secure are practiced as part of the AVRSB emergency procedures in all schools.
Kristen Loyst, spokesperson for the Annapolis Valley Regional School Board, said that no threat had been made to Cambridge Elementary, but the lockdown was implemented at the elementary school next door as a "precaution."
The AVRSB announced at 2 p.m. that Cambridge Elementary would be dismissed at the normal time, with RCMP officers remaining on site to assist and ensure student safety.
Cambridge students who normally walk home were instead bused home as a precaution.
At 2:30 p.m., the board announced the lockdown had been lifted and dismissal at Central Kings would proceed as usual.
“I was extremely proud of our students and staff and the manner in which they conducted themselves during the event,” said principal Janice Foote.
As of September 2013, there were approximately 775 students enrolled at Central Kings and 201 at Cambridge Elementary.