The third threat in a week was made toward Red Oak School in Highland Park Tuesday as officials denounced the threats, which come following a controversial viral social media post.
The City of Highland Park said they were notified Tuesday morning that two agencies outside of Highland Park received a non-specific threat referring to “Red Oak Elementary.”
The threat was non-specific and did not specifically mention Highland Park.
The city and North Shore School District 112 said they take every threat seriously and work collaboratively to protect student safety.
Police officers and school staff swept the school Tuesday morning. An evacuation was not ordered.
Guidance from the Department of Homeland Security instructed the district that all schools could continue operating as normal.
The Highland Park Police Department is increasing patrols and visiting all Highland Park schools.
The threat is the third in less than a week involving Red Oak Elementary School.
Bomb threats were received twice last week, once on Thursday and the other on Friday. Both prompted the evacuation of the school.
Earlier this month, “Libs of TikTok” published a post on X, formerly Twitter, with a photo of a classroom that had a pride flag hanging up.
“Why would an elementary school have a massive progress pride flag hanging above students’ heads all day?” the post said before tagging a “Red Oak School.”
An Instagram post made by the same account specified it was Red Oak Elementary School in Highland Park.
The X post received almost 600,000 views, nearly 11,000 likes, over 3,000 shares and more than 2,000 comments. The Instagram post received over 7,000 likes.
Three other Red Oak schools in the country also received the same bomb threats last week.
City officials said they are aware of the social media post and law enforcement is investigating it.
Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering, along with other city staff and administration from District 112 and District 113, issued a joint statement Tuesday afternoon regarding the incidents.
“Although investigations into each threat have revealed them to be non-credible, they are no less frightening because they target our most precious constituents: our children,” the statement said.
Officials said Highland Park is not alone in receiving threats. Many communities across the country have encountered the same pattern of non-credible threats targeting schools, places of worship and public libraries.
“It is unacceptable that individuals acting with such disregard for public safety and student learning have disrupted school days, library programming, and other activities throughout the nation,” the statement said.
Officials say they take each threat seriously and are taking precautions to keep students safe.
“We are united in our commitment to overcoming this challenge and working together to protect public safety in our schools and neighborhoods,” the statement added.