Belfast Telegraph

Anger as parents not told of bomb threat to school for 24 hours

By Rebecca Black

A Co Fermanagh primary school that received a phone to say that explosives had been left on the premises did not inform parents for 24 hours.

Holy Trinity Primary School was one of seven schools in Northern Ireland that received a chilling phone warning earlier this week.

The threat came as children were making their way to the school and was later declared a hoax.

But it has since emerged that the school, which is situated on Derrin Road and Mill Street, did not inform parents of the threat until more than 24 hours later - and did so by text message.

While other schools caught up in the threat evacuated children, the Holy Trinity Primary School did not. In a message to parents a spokesperson for the school said: "Like a number of schools, we received a malicious hoax call.

"The police attended and after a thorough check of the premises, school continued as normal."

But the response by Holy Trinity Primary School has been criticised by parents and politicians.

"I was horrified to find out from a colleague at work that Holy Trinity was one of the schools which received a bomb warning," one parent said.

"Parents have a right to know if their children are under threat and it is unbelievable that the school did not think that this was important.

"There seems to be no recognition that this was a serious failure by the school in not at least notifying parents that our children had been threatened."

Holy Trinity principal Brian Treacy was asked why parents of pupils at the school were not informed of the threat on Tuesday.

Mr Treacy issued the same short statement that had been texted to parents yesterday.

A spokeswoman for the Council for Catholic Maintained Schools said: "We are confident that the school and the PSNI worked together, in the best interests of the children, and responded appropriately in the circumstances."

PSNI Chief Superintendent Garry Eaton confirmed the threat was a hoax.

"Local police responded immediately, working with the individual school authorities to establish what the circumstances of the calls were and to put appropriate procedures in place to ensure the safety of both pupils and staff," he said.

Belfast Telegraph


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