On Monday, it was reported that there was an active shooter at St John’s prep school in Massachusetts. Both local and state police were dispatched to the area. This terrified the students, their families, and the faculty, especially in light of the recent spike in school shootings and the nation’s increased alertness.

“There has been a report of an active shooter on campus at Benjamin Hall,” the school website’s statement read. “Danvers and State police are on site. Students, Faculty, and Staff are sheltering in place. We will further provide updates as soon as possible.”

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Troopers came to the school and started searching classrooms right at once, but they discovered no imminent danger and no injuries.

Students from the all-boys, grades 6–12 schools fled the building in terror. Parents went to the area, but they were asked to wait as police evaluated the potential threat. The school now thinks the shooting threat was a hoax, though police are still on the scene.

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“Teams still conducting sweeps, still no threats detected,” the state police’s Twitter account said. “Students who fled school grounds on their own are being directed/shuttled to Stop and Shop, 301 Newbury St Danvers. Parents can report there to be reunited with their children.”

‘We believe that St. John’s was the victim of a Swatting call. Everyone is safe, there have been no injuries and police are currently clearing campus buildings as we account for all students,’ an update on the school’s website read.

The source of the swatting call is being investigated by police. Recently, “swatting” incidents have started popping up all across the country, including in Massachusetts. In mid-February, more than a dozen schools in the Greater Boston area went into lockdown as a result of the same or very similar recorded 911 prank calls.

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Edward Hardiman, the head of the school, declared, “This is everybody’s nightmare. My message to our students underneath the tent was some of us are going to be OK, some of us are going to be really traumatized by what happened. It’s our responsibility to reach out to each other, to support each other, to care for each other.”