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Administrators: First day of school went smoothly

August 19, 2009|By DAN DEARTH

Item found in locker prompted police response to North High

HAGERSTOWN -- The first day of school in Washington County went pretty well with the exception of a suspicious item that was found Wednesday morning inside North Hagerstown High School.

Hagerstown Police Sgt. Paul Kifer said Wednesday evening that he wasn't ready to release a description of the item until an investigation is concluded later this week.

"We still have several people to talk to," said Kifer, who added the item was not dangerous.

The call came in at about 7:20 a.m., and the scene was cleared about an hour later, Kifer said.

He said classes started on time.

Students arriving at the Pennsylvania Avenue school Wednesday morning were diverted from the property, with some waiting in nearby restaurants. School buses were sent to the former County Market lot, Hagerstown Police Capt. Mark Holtzman said.

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Other problems that were reported on Wednesday were minor, Superintendent Elizabeth Morgan said.

"We had the typical bus problems," Morgan said. "I think it was amazing. It was a really good opening."

Morgan said, to her knowledge, no students were left off at the wrong bus stops.

Troubles were few at the grand opening of the Barbara Ingram School for the Arts in downtown Hagerstown. Besides a few scheduling problems, the first day of school went smoothly.

Washington County Public Schools has more than 20,000 students who attend 46 facilities, according to the WCPS Web site. The system has about 2,500 employees.

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