OMAHA (KPTM)- A planned school shooting drill at Treynor High School in Pottawattamie County, Iowa, scheduled for Saturday, is canceled after the drill received national controversy.
City officials are disappointed in the cancellation, arguing it is a lost learning opportunity. Treynor Schools Superintendent Kevin Elwood explained, ""I think it would have been an excellent training opportunity for all the agencies involved, very disappointed in the fact we wont have the opportunity to learn from that experience."
Pottawattamie County Sheriff Jeff Danker agreed "if you don't practice something like this, it just makes it that much more difficult cause it's not something that happens everyday."
The drill involved multiple county agencies, requiring more expenses. Homeland Security offered funding with the requirement of a terror component. The image of "domestic terror," with the shooters being white, angry about illegal immigration, with ties to white supremacy groups, and the victim being Hispanic, conservative groups argued this makes 'patriots look like terrorists', even with the scenario being fictitious.
Elwood explained he had received hundreds of emails from all over the country expressing concern, but a voicemail received Friday morning was the final straw to cancel the drill. Danker explained "an individual called in and made the statement, ‘you better not come to work today because your school shooting is going to really happen." Elwood continued "it made some references to the fact that if we want to participate in this type of activity, maybe it should play out for real."
Elwood clarified, "there were scenarios involving a lot of political hot topics that were going to be role played out, and that was the furthest thing from the truth as could be possible."
But the threats made were not worth the learning opportunity that could come of the drill, explained elwood. "We have no intention of putting students in harm's way."
Officials with Pottawattamie County continue to investigate who made the threatening call. They do believe it came from out-of-state.