The entire campus of Foyil Schools was evacuated following a bomb threat just before 8 a.m. this morning.

According to Jackie Luckinbill, business manager for Foyil School District, the high school secretary received a brief phone call around 7:58 a.m. this morning.

“The caller briefly gave a bomb threat before hanging up,” Luckinbill said. “We could not determine if it was a male or female.”

According to Rogers County Emergency Management Director Bob Anderson, the call lasted less than five seconds and the threat was not aimed at one particular building on the campus.

Foyil Elementary Principal Phillip Cimei said the threat came at the worst time, but the students were taken care of quickly.

“Most of the kids had already gotten off the bus and some were still unloading when the threat came in,” he said. “I calmly called the teachers and asked them to put the students back on the busses and they did so. There was no panic and everything went very smoothly.”

The students, as well as faculty, were evacuated to a nearby church, as is called for in the district’s safety plan. All students were accounted for and faculty members began notifying parents who weren’t already on campus to pick up their children.

Firefighters from the Foyil Fire District as well as members of the Rogers County Sheriff’s Office and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol responded to the call “within minutes,” Cimei said, and immediately began a search of the buildings and the grounds.

Just before 9 a.m., two backpacks and a notebook were found outside the gymnasium. However, those were claimed with minutes after Luckinbill made phone calls to the church to verify they were left behind in the evacuation.

Sheriff’s deputies verified that the east portion of the campus had been searched and was clear around 9:05 a.m., and officials were still searching the west side of the campus.

After giving that information, the deputies traveled to the church to brief faculty on a walk through that they would be a part of.

“They’re going to go tell the teachers that they will walk through the schools they work with a firefighter or deputy to do one more sweep through before everyone will be allowed back into the buildings,” Anderson said. “Right now, it doesn’t look like we’ve found anything.”

Even though no bomb was found on the campus, Cimei said threats like this are taken very seriously and the district’s safety plan came in handy.

“We don’t go over the safety plan or practice it everyday, so it’s all brand new to us,” he said.

Just after the recent shootings at schools across the nation, Cimei said the district conducted a lockdown drill, which is also included in the safety plan.

“We just practiced our lockdown drill a few weeks ago and it went smoothly,” he said. “The children weren’t scared and everyone knew exactly what to do.”

Anderson said the district should be commended for its swiftness in evacuating everyone from the campus.

“They did a very good job and knew what to do perfectly,” Anderson said.

Officials said school would likely be canceled for the remainder of the day.

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