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Middle school evacuation fuels fears in parents

As communities around the country remain on edge about just how safe kids are in school, a bomb threat was phoned into a local junior high school Tuesday morning.

After a thorough search of Taylorview Middle School, police found nothing there.

In light of recent events, like the tragedy in Connecticut and last week’s gun scare at Skyline High, Tuesday’s bomb threat did nothing to calm the nerves of parents in the community.

Just four days after a gunman committed a horrific mass murder inside a Newtown, Conn. elementary school, students were rushed out of Taylorview when a voicemail said there was a bomb inside.

“I think it’s a little insane that someone would be ridiculous enough after Friday to pull something like this,” said Taylorview parent Lisa Rhead.

Students were taken to a nearby church, where parents came to pick them up.

It was a safe and smooth operation, but marred by worry.

“I’m feeling really concerned about what’s going on,” said Simon Acosta, who was picking up his daughter.

“It’s unfortunate and you have to take situations like this seriously,” said B.J. Denning, another parent.

Police and school officials say they are taking every potential threat seriously.

“We really do try to take everything seriously,” said Joelyn Hansen, a spokesperson for the Idaho Falls Police Department. “We want to make sure that we can do everything we can to minimize any type of danger.”

In the same week of two deadly mass shootings in the United States, two school days have been disrupted at District 91 schools.

“Enough is enough now,” Denning said. “It makes you wonder if you should even have your kid in school at this point.”

“Our kids need to be able to go to school and know that they’re OK to go and learn, and to not have issues of guns and violence and — just something’s got to change,” Rhead said.

District 91 says it’s constantly looking to improve its current protocols. Meanwhile, they and police want to urge parents that continuing with much of the same will go a long way to protect children.

“Be calm,” said Margaret Wimborne, a spokesperson for Idaho Falls School District 91. “Be assured that the school districts work very closely with local law enforcement, that we have a number of protocols and procedures in place.”

“We live in a safe community,” Hansen said. “We want to keep it that way.”

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