Last Updated: 8:30 a.m.
Belle Terre Elementary was placed under a “Code Blue” alert early this morning when a parent found a note in her child’s backpack mentioning a bomb. The parent found the note at the child’s home. The child himself had not written it, and law enforcement does not consider the child to be involved in the threat.
Out of caution, the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office sent its bomb-sniffing dog, Jax, to the school with a team of deputies who were sweeping the school with a team of Belle Terre and district personnel. A robocall went to homes of Belle Terre Elementary parents before 8 a.m. asking them not to immediately bring their children to school. But a districts spokesman said the sweep may be completed before 9 o’clock hour, when classes are scheduled to begin. School is open and will resume.
“There’s plenty of time. Obviously we want to make the sweep as quickly as possible but as thoroughly as possible,” the district’s Jason Wheeler said from the scene. “It does help that the school is nearly empty.”
“School is not cancelled, buses are still running, those who are outside of campus we are keeping them outside, those in extended day are safe and secure,” he said. If children do show up and can’t stay in their parents’ vehicles, they’re secured by school personnel. A code blue means students and staff shelter in place.
“This was reported very early this morning” by the parent who found the note, a sheriff’s spokesperson said. “We don’t know where it came from but it was located in the backpack. The son did not write it. It was not this kid threatening the school.”
About 65 to 66 percent of Belle Terre Elementary students are attending classes in person. The rest attend either through live-remote attendance at home or through iFlagler, the district’s virtual school. The district provided the thre options to accommodate for the coronavirus pandemic.
By 8:30, the sheriff’s spokesperson said “law enforcement has cleared it, the school has done their security sweep, they have removed the code blue,” and nothing was found. School was expected to begin at its normal time.