By Brendan Rees
Hundreds of frantic parents gathered outside Casey Stadium in Cranbourne East to pick up their children following a reported bomb scare at neighbouring schools on Monday 9 September.
It’s understood students and staff were rushed out of Marnebek School, Cranbourne East Secondary College and Casey Grammar School about 12.30pm – while messages were sent to parents urging them to pick up their children from Casey Stadium at New Holland Drive where the entrance was guarded by police.
A Victoria Police spokesman said the schools were evacuated as a precaution while police performed safety checks.
“The areas have since been deemed safe and police have cleared the scene,” the spokesman said.
Parent Stacey, who asked not to use her surname, said she received a message from Marnebek School via the school’s phone app about 12pm saying to pick up her 10-year-old daughter.
“They didn’t say what it was until I got there to pick her up,” she said. “There was police, people checking licences.”
Stacey said the students were told to leave their belongings behind at school before being ushered to the stadium.
“My daughter who has anaphylaxis, her EpiPen was in her bag. They were left at the school.
“They had the sirens going at school, evacuating them so they were a bit scared,” she explained.
She said parents had to show identification before children were brought to them individually.
“They were keeping the kids calm … you had to have ID. There was apparently some parents that had issues with that but I didn’t.
“I can’t speak for the other schools but Marnebek were handled very well,” Stacey said.
In a Facebook post, parent Kerry Brown said she received a message to collect her daughter which read: “Police are conducting safety checks at a number of schools in Cranbourne today (9 August). The schools have been evacuated as a precaution and the investigation is ongoing.”
An Education Department spokesperson said following advice from Victoria Police, Marnebek School, Cranbourne East Secondary College and Casey Grammar School were evacuated.
“The safety of children and students was always our first priority,” the spokesperson said.
“Parents have been informed and asked to meet and collect their children from Casey Basketball Stadium.”
Casey Grammar did not wish to comment.