William Ramsay Elementary School briefly placed on secure status earlier today after man refused to leave

William Ramsay Elementary School (image via City of Alexandria)

William Ramsay Elementary School was briefly placed on “secure the building” status earlier today after a person not permitted to be at the school showed up at the front door and then refused to leave.

The school went into secure status around 10:54 a.m. for approximately 15 minutes, the school said in a release.

A man in a hoodie was at the entrance trying to speak to the principal and refused to leave, according to the scanner. Staff locked the door and a release said while the school day continued on a normal schedule inside the building, no one was allowed to enter or leave the school.

According to a message from the Principal Michael Routhouska to staff and families:

Dear William Ramsay Staff and Families,

At about 10:54 a.m. today, William Ramsay Elementary School was placed in “secure the building” status for approximately 15 minutes due to an individual not permitted to be on the premises, who refused to leave. The individual did not make it beyond the secured vestibule of the school. The Alexandria Police Department was on site to investigate the situation and reported no threat to the school, which has now resumed normal operations.

The decision to secure William Ramsay was taken out of an abundance of caution. “Secure the building” means that the school day continues on a normal schedule inside the school but no one is allowed to enter or leave the school while the building remains secured. An Alexandria City Public Schools video provides more information on what happens when a school is placed in “secure the building” mode.

The safety and security of our students and staff are of utmost priority.


Michael J. Routhouska