Bear scare causes delay at Butler Elementary (UPDATE)

Published: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 at 03:20 PM.

School children began being released to the long line of waiting cars about 2:45 p.m. By that time traffic was backed up all the way to Highway 98.

After students were released, Assistant Principal Meredith Spence told The Sun that when the PE teacher took his last class outside about 1:40 p.m., the bear was spotted at the Dumpster where the day's lunches are trashed. When the bear saw people, it went back into the woods.

Spence said it was a medium to large adult bear. While some said a cub was also spotted, Spence said she was not aware of a second bear.

She did say this is the first time she knows of a bear on school grounds, but school personnel have been on the lookout as there has been talk of seeing one in the vicinity.

She said that the children were brought inside when the bear was spotted and all classes were alerted to close their blinds so that class would not be disrupted. The Sheriff's Office was then called, as well as FWC.

Plans were then put in motion to reroute dismissals so that all would exit from the front of the building where they would be safe.

Spence said dismissal usually takes place at 2:20 p.m. and she was pleased with how smoothly everything went. The pre-K classes, which normally dismiss at 2 p.m., were held in the cafeteria.

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