‘Shoot students and teachers’: Parent reveals threat that shut down Leslieville school
TORONTO – “There were threats of, specifically, gun violence, of shooting the school, shooting children, students, teachers,” says Courtney Radic, a mother of two students at Duke of Connaught Junior and Senior Public School.
The Leslieville elementary school was placed under “hold and secure” on September 28th, and remained that way on September 29th.
Radic says a police officer from 55 Division revealed to several parents that “a letter had been received by the school threatening, quite disturbing letter, threatening to shoot students and teachers.”
It prompted Radic and most parents at the school to keep their children home for at least a day after the threat was made.
The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) confirms 654 students were absent out of 890 on Friday, September 29th.
Radic says a small group of parents continue to keep their children home, as they fear for their safety.
“It’s frightening as a parent,” she adds.
A number of parents reached out to Global News, including Radic, but many asked to remain anonymous.
All of them said they heard from Toronto Police that the words “shoot kids point blank in the face” were included in a handwritten letter that was received by the school the morning of Thursday, September 28th, prompting the school board to initiate the “hold and secure.”
As far as any of the families know, there has been no update and no resolution to that threat.
Ryan Bird, spokesperson for the TDSB, says “we’re not aware of any imminent threat but that would really have to come from Toronto Police, as it still is an active investigation.”
But Radic, whose children are in grades 4 and 6, remains afraid.
“I feel nervous every day, I feel concerned every single day.”
She’s especially upset about the lack of information, considering police officers were so “forthcoming” on the first day of the threat.
“We still don’t know why was it lifted,” she says, referring to the “hold and secure,” adding, “why is it safe now and it wasn’t safe then? We don’t know.”
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