WINDHAM, Maine — The Windham Police Department says two Regional School Unit 14 school officials found an “email of a threatening nature towards the school system” Monday morning. According to police, the emails were sent from two different sources and were not identical.
Because the threat did not specify which school, the Windham school department superintendent and police decided to evacuate all six schools Monday and close the school Tuesday and Wednesday.
Windham teachers, administrators and staff stayed calm when the call came first for a lockdown, then an evacuation. But for parents who received an urgent text and a recorded message from the district to immediately pick up their children, they say they couldn’t keep from thinking the worst.
“Well of course you immediately assume the worst,” Matthew McDonald, father of two girls, said. “I just got in my car and headed here as quickly as I could because these things have happened in other areas of the country. And you just don’t want to think that it could happen here, but it could. So I got here as quickly as I could.”
“I mean, I don’t think anybody knows how to handle anything like this,” said Kathleen DiSilva, whose daughter is a first-grader. “They did a great job just getting people in and trying to get the kids to everyone and stuff.”
Maine state police are working to identify the source of the two threatening emails and the person or persons who sent them.
“The safety of the students and staff were paramount at all times during the decision-making process,” Superintendent Sandy Prince said in an email sent to parents. “After reviewing the situation with law enforcement, we have mutually decided to allow more time for the investigation to proceed; thus all schools will be closed tomorrow.”