Staff Reporter It was quite a week at the Avon Grove Charter School.On Thursday, Oct. 30, AGCS experienced a bomb threat at the high school and an unscheduled fire alarm at the Early Leaning Center at Kemblesville.
According to Dr. Kevin Brady, director of AGCS, a steam vent became clogged at the ELC and set off the fire alarm. Brady said that because it wasn't a planned fire drill, everyone at AGCS was concerned that it was "the real thing." Once the cause for the alarm was discovered, Brady said everyone was relieved.
However, the bomb threat turned out to be a real cause for concern at the middle school and high school building on State Road in West Grove.
According to Brady, the school alerted Avondale State Police to a "low level" threat regarding a bomb last Thursday. The threat was written by an unknown suspect on the wall of the high school boy's bathroom and stated that the bomb was scheduled to detonate in the school on Friday, Oct. 31.
Brady said the school reacted by sending a letter home to parents on Thursday evening, explaining the situation and the school's intentions for the issue.
That same evening, state police officers arrived at the AGSC in West Grove to perform a full search of the building with the assistance of bomb-sniffing dogs.
Brady said it is the school's goal to look at the situation objectively, even though it did cause a disruption.
"This is the first time that we have had something of this nature happen at our school," he said. "It's amazing what a disruption it caused. We did not cancel school, which we think is a good thing."
Brady also added that while working with state police officers on the investigation, he learned that quite a few other schools in the area had experienced similar threats.
"We don't think it was a coordinated thing, however," he said.
Brady speculated that kids may have wanted to have the day off from school because of the Philadelphia Phillies World Series Champions Parade, which took place on the Friday after the prank was reported. He also thought that it could have been intended as a pre-Halloween "Mischief Night" prank.
Brady said that AGCS continues to work with the state police on the investigation.
"I wouldn't be surprised if with the amount of attention this has brought us, someone will come forward with more details," he said.
"There are so many great things that are going on here that are exciting and worth attention. When things happened like this, it's frustrating and ties up momentum for awhile," said Brady.
Brady praised his upper level students, who, he said, look after their lower classmates and provide a support system in the school.
"They do deserve a lot of credit for that, but every once in awhile, teenagers do things like this. Our high school kids are generally well behaved, nice kids," he said.
Meanwhile, the investigation continues at AGCS. Anyone with information regarding the investigation should contact the state police at the Avondale Barracks at 610-268-2022.
"It was a trying week, but all in all we'll end up getting to the bottom of it," said Brady.