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School Blames Communication System Error After Parents Were Not Alerted Of Gun Scare

MODESTO (CBS13) — Modesto City Schools are blaming a communication system error after some parents were not alerted to a gun scare at Enochs High School Saturday night.

The district said the problem with its alert system was fixed Monday, but parents we talked with are upset that they were not immediately notified about what was going on.

On-lookers filmed a chaotic scene Saturday night after a student reported seeing a former classmate who was allegedly involved in the theft of a gun on campus at the Winter Formal.

The incident turned out to be a false alarm. Modesto City Schools spokesperson Becky Fortuna explained, "This former student was never at the school, the students were never in any danger."

But parents are upset they were not notified about the incident.

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"It was really really upsetting that there wasn't a phone call or anything as to what was going on," said parent Melissa Martinez.

Martinez said she found out from an alert on the NextDoor App and went to the school's social media pages to find out if it was legitimate.

"There was nothing there so I wasn't sure what was going on. I was confused," Martinez said. "So I called my daughter. And while I'm calling my daughter, my heart was racing and you know, all these thoughts."

Fortuna explained that the school's alert system, "School-Messenger" failed to inform parents and students.

"Unfortunately our system is set up to where we can only make calls and texts until 10 p.m. at night."

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The district said they fixed the problem today, but some parents believe the system should have been checked prior to the start of the school year.

Martinez suggested the school should have turned to social media to keep parents informed.

"I understand that there might have been something not going right with the system, but you have a facebook page. Do something with it," Martinez said.

The district did put up information about the incident on their district pages, but parents CBS13 talked to said the school's individual site is their first choice for immediate information.

Modesto City Schools has partnered up with Modesto Police to create a new safety task force. It has a meeting scheduled for Tuesday, so emergency vehicles will be visible on campus.

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