SANFORD, Fla. — The Seminole County Sheriff is changing how "code red" drills are conducted in schools after "panic" and "confusion" erupted after an unannounced drill at a high school last week.
- "Panic" erupts after unannounced "code red" drill last week
- Seminole sheriff suspended code red drills to review policies
- Sheriff reinstating code red drills with procedure changes
The unannounced "code red" drill went off without a problem Thursday morning at Lake Brantley High School, but afterward, a student put a screen capture of an alert from the drill on Snapchat and "caused a panic during lunch," a Seminole County Public Schools spokesman said.
Students and staff misheard a PA announcement about the success of the earlier drill, partially because of construction workers hammering outside, the spokesman said, causing the panic.
After being briefed on what happened at Lake Brantley High, Sheriff Dennis Lemma suspended all code red drills until further review.
Lemma said he met with the superintendent and developed a plan to continue code red drills. Some will be announced, others unannounced — but when an unannounced drill is conducted, all faculty, students, staff, and parents will be notified that it's only a drill and not a real threat.
According to Altamonte Springs Police, at least one student went to the school clinic for twisting her ankle after the incident. The city fire department also responded to a call about a teacher complaining of chest pain. Neither were taken to a hospital.
"The safety and security of our campuses and the people that inhabit them day in and day out has remained and will remain, our top concern and priority," Lemma said in a statement.