The Fake Threats, Real Consequences campaign was launched as a partnership between the Lee County School District and local law enforcement agencies to try to keep students from making threats of committing violence against classmates or schools in general.
The Lee County School District Superintendent Dr. Gregory Adkins spoke about the campaign at a press conference held at the Cape Coral Police Department on Tuesday.
"Since holiday break, the School District of Lee County has had 20 threats made against students and or schools district wide," Adkins said.
He also said five students have been arrested since the Fake Threats campaign was launched about a month ago.
Adkins said threats disrupt learning and create fear within communities.
"Parents are afraid to send their kid to school and, understandably so, if a threat has been made," Adkins said.
The campaign has a zero-tolerance policy. Adkins said all leads will be investigated, and those who are found to have made a threat will be arrested and charged with a second degree felony.
In addition to dealing with the police, students will also face a school district investigation where they may face additional disciplinary action from the school board.
"When you make a threat to do bodily harm against students or staff of a school that is at the highest level, we have no tolerance for that," Adkins said.
Adkins said Lee County students who make threats can be expelled or face reassignment to an alternative school.
Their parents may also be held responsible, by having to pay the police for investigation expenses.