Thousands of students evacuated from UK schools following phone threats to 'take children's heads off'
Published 23/05/2016 | 17:48
Thousands of pupils were evacuated from schools across the UK today following a series of phone calls which threatened to "take children's heads off".
The phonecalls were made as the school day began, with principals deciding to evacuate the buildings.
Twenty-six schools in total were evacuated and thousands of pupils were affected.
Some teachers described the phonecalls as being "pre-recorded and featuring an American accent".
A caller told one receptionist that "if the school called the police the bomb would be detonated immediately".
One principal said he had no doubt the phonecalls were an elaborate hoax, but he wasn't willing to take the risk.
"It's almost certainly a hoax but with what's happening across Europe I'm not prepared to take that gamble," Canterbury Academy head teacher Phil Karnavas said.
Some schools kept parents updated with the incident over social media for the remainder of the day.
The evacuations also affected some students who had begun to sit their GCSE exams when the calls were made.
Police carried out searches in school buildings but were unable to find anything.
Our Canterbury Academy site is now back open and all classes will be running as normal. Thank you for your patience.— Kent Adult Education (@KentAdultEd) May 23, 2016