Skip to comments.U.S. Alerts Schools About Terror Threat
Posted on 10/07/2004 10:14:24 AM PDT by crushelits
WASHINGTON - The Education Department has advised school leaders nationwide to watch for people spying on their buildings or buses to help detect any possibility of terrorism like the deadly school siege in Russia.
The warning follows an analysis by the FBI (news - web sites) and the Homeland Security Department of the siege that killed nearly 340 people, many of them students, in the city of Beslan last month.
"The horror of this attack may have created significant anxiety in our own country among parents, students, faculty staff and other community members," Deputy Education Secretary Eugene Hickok said in a letter to schools and education groups.
The safety advice is based on lessons learned from the Russia incident. But there is "no specific information indicating that there is a terrorist threat to any schools or universities in the United States," Hickok said.
Federal law enforcement officials also have encouraged local police to stay in contact with school officials and have encouraged reporting of suspicious activities, the letter says.
In particular, schools were told to watch for activities that may be legitimate on their own but may suggest a heightened terrorist threat if many of them occur.
Among those activities:
_ Interest in obtaining site plans for schools, bus routes and attendance lists;
_ Prolonged "static surveillance" by people disguised as panhandlers, shoe shiners, newspaper or flower vendors or street sweepers not previously seen in the area;
_ Observations of security drills;
_ People staring at or quickly looking away from employees or vehicles as they enter or leave parking areas;
_ Foot surveillance of campuses involving individuals working together.
The effort is the latest by the Education Department and other federal agencies to encourage school officials to maintain and practice a plan for responding to emergencies.
After the terrorist takeover of the Russian school, President Bush (news - web sites) asked his top advisers to review their strategies for dealing with hostage situations, Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge has said.
The federal government is advising schools to take many steps to improve the security of their buildings. Those include installing locks for all doors and windows, having a single entry point into buildings and ensuring they can reach school bus drivers in an emergency.
The Education Department sent its letter by e-mail Wednesday to school police, state school officers, school boards, groups representing principals and many other organizations.
The Homeland Security Department also sent a bulletin Wednesday to federal, state and local emergency officials to provide fresh guidance based on the review of the school siege in Russia.
Did the UN approve this message to the schools ?
Is this what Roger Hedgecock was talking about on Rush's show today?
The guy filling in for Rush today (Roger somebody) said the US has a disk from a terrorist with information about certain school systems, including San Diego. I'm at work and only caught part of what he said - anybody have further info?
That was my question. But Roger said there was a disk with a list, and this story has no mention of that.
We need a Global Approval....
S.D. school crisis plan is found on disk in Iraq
No threat seen to district; children are safe, police say
By Kelly Thornton
UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER
September 30, 2004
A man arrested by U.S. authorities in Iraq had a computer disk in his possession containing a public report downloaded from a U.S. Department of Education Web site on crisis planning in school districts, including San Diego Unified.
The man was described as an Iraqi national with connections to terrorism and the insurgency that is fighting U.S. forces in Iraq. Officials in San Diego said the man's intentions were unknown.
San Diego law enforcement officials said there was no indication of any terrorist plot against schools in San Diego or elsewhere in the country. They did not publicly release the information because there appeared to be no threat. The information was relayed to the San Diego FBI office last week and then to the school district Friday.
"The children are absolutely safe," said San Diego Police Chief Bill Lansdowne. "If there was a threat, we, the San Diego Police Department, would be first to notify (parents). This is not a threat."
The disk contained a document entitled "Practical Information on Crisis Planning, A Guide for Schools and Communities." The 50-plus page document, published in May 2003 by the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools, is available to the public on the U.S. Department of Education's Web site, said San Diego District spokeswoman Peri Lynn Turnbull.
FBI officials visited the office of district Superintendent Alan Bersin Friday to inform him, Turnbull said. Because there was no indication that terrorists were targeting any schools, in San Diego or elsewhere, the district informed the school police department, but decided not to notify schools and parents.
A man arrested by U.S. authorities in Iraq had a computer disk in his possession containing a public report downloaded from a U.S. Department of Education Web site on crisis planning in school districts, including San Diego Unified. The man was described as an Iraqi national with connections to terrorism and the insurgency that is fighting U.S. forces in Iraq. Officials in San Diego said the man's intentions were unknown.
I bet she's never voted Repub in her life. But it gives me hope there are other stupid libs out there who are finally seeing the light and hearing the utter cluelessness of the Two Johns campaign.
Pinging my Threat Matrix FRiends....
Heads up. We've known about the guy with the disks containing info about our schools, but this is new info to me.
Didn't beslan involve insiders laying the groundwork for the takeover?
Thanks. I listen at work and catch bits and pieces and it can be frustrating.
And I thought we should arrest the NEA union thugs who are turning our schools into Marxist madrassas....................................
Seen this coming right after 9/11, it's only a matter or time.
Ah... thank you!! I assumed there was one (a thread on FR), but remembered reading it in the paper and wondering WTH??
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