BREAKING: Ridgway schools in lockdown state

by Dalton Carver

UPDATE, 1:58 p.m. : Superintendent Steve Smith responded to the lockdown situation via email. 

"Safety for our students and staff is always a primary concern of mine. We did have a very upset individual in the school this morning and using our safety protocols as a guide I decided to err on the side of caution and limit our students' of campus privileges for today. Classes and activities will not be affected and we are trying to provide our students with as normal a day as possible.While I appreciate the fact that folks have questions and concerns when these actions are taken, please know that ensuring that our students and staff have a safe place to learn and work will sometimes require us to take precautionary measures."

UPDATE, 1:44 p.m.: Ridgway Secondary School principal Jeremy Voytko said he was not able to comment on the lockdown situation at this time.

The Ridgway school district is in a state of "soft" lockdown for unknown reasons at this time. Earlier today, the district released a letter to the parents on the subject, but didn't reveal why the action was taken. 

"Dear Parents, Students and Staff of Ridgway Secondary School,

Ridgway Secondary School will be in a soft lockdown/ sheltered in place today. While we do not believe the school is in any immediate danger, a potential outside threat has been identified so we are erring on the side of caution.

This means:

All outside doors are locked and checked
Off campus privileges are suspended for High School Students
Students will not be able to leave campus or be outside the school during the school day.
If you need to bring your child to school, or pick up your child please buzz in through the front door as usual and we will release them to you.
Thank you for your understanding and know our priority is your child's safety."


When asked if the Ridgway Marshal's Office was aware of the situation, deputy marshal Jeff Hunt said the office is, but could not comment at the time. Hunt said the lockdown was school-imposed as opposed to undertaken by law enforcement. The lockdown was also confirmed by school board member Tim Taplin, who declined to comment. 

The Plaindealer has sent out emails and placed several calls with the school district to find out more information. As more is revelaed, it will be posted here.