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Doomsday threats put Oswego schools on higher security alert

Updated: January 15, 2013 11:33AM

OSWEGO — Administrators have heightened security at schools in the Oswego School District after rumors of school violence in anticipation of Dec. 21, the last day of school before winter break. It also is the date for the world’s latest doomsday scenario, based on the end of one of the cycles in the ancient Mayan calendar.

In an e-mail sent to parents Thursday, administrators said they were contacting parents and staff “because we have learned of student-initiated rumors about school violence occurring on or before December 21. School safety is a priority for School District 308 and such rumors about a threat to our students and staff are taken seriously.”

Rumors began circulating at Oswego High School, then spread to Oswego East High School and some of the district’s junior highs, prompting administrators to send the message to parents, according to district spokesman Kristine Liptrot.

“We believe that this was all part of the Mayan doomsday predictions and something snowballed as one person told another,” Liptrot said.

“Though the police department and school administrators are investigating, we can find no credible evidence of a threat. There really is at this time no cause for alarm, but we’ll continue to investigate it.”

She called the rumors “a game of ‘operator’ that has gotten out of control.”

The e-mail encourages students to discuss any rumors or threats of school violence with an adult.

Parents are asked to discuss the issue with their children and report any information they feel is important to their child’s school principal.

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