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Students Dismissed Early After Threatening Message Found in Bathroom

Details of the message were not disclosed but school officials did not believe there is any imminent danger to students or staff

Students at a Massachusetts high school were dismissed early Monday after authorities say a threatening message was found in a boy's bathroom.

Superintendent Maureen Lynch said out of an abundance of caution, students at Whittier Tech Vocational High School in Haverhill were dismissed noon.

Details of the message were not disclosed but school officials did not believe there is any imminent danger to students or staff.

The Massachusetts State Police bomb squad responded to the scene to assist Haverhill police with the investigation, which is ongoing. Authorities said explosive detection K9s searched and deemed the area safe.

Lynch said in a statement she was disappointed a school day was "needlessly disrupted for the second time in less than a week."

"This behavior is unacceptable and is counter to our values. We will address the seriousness of this issue directly with our students in order to make it clear that there is no place for threats like this at Whittier," said Lynch.

As a precaution, Lynch said there will be an increased police presence at the school Tuesday.

"I want to emphasize that students, staff and families should remain vigilant in coming forward to report any issues that may jeopardize the safety of our school community," said Lynch.

The Superintendent added that because of Monday's early dismissal, Friday, which was supposed to be a half-day, will now be a full day of school.

The investigation into the threat is ongoing. State police are offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to an arrest.

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