School trips called off in Anne Arundel

Terrorist fears stop visits to Baltimore, Washington

February 15, 2003|By Laura Loh | Laura Loh,SUN STAFF

Anne Arundel County school officials called off most field trips yesterday, including those to Baltimore and Washington, in response to terrorism concerns.

Other destinations that were banned until further notice included airports, federal installations, nuclear facilities and public utilities, according to a memo issued by the administration to school principals.

Future international field trips also were canceled. Earlier this week, officials called off a North County High School trip to London for a group of tourism academy students.

Some outings within the state, excluding Baltimore, will go on as planned, officials said. They said they called off other trips because they want to stay in constant contact with students - something that is difficult to do during excursions - and do not want to risk having students stranded far from school in the event of an attack.

Schools across the county had to break the bad news to students about canceled trips, some of which had been postponed previously because of October's sniper shootings.

Corkran Middle School Principal Chris Truffer said he canceled a trip for 40 music students who had expected to visit the Washington Ballet Company yesterday in the nation's capital. A seventh-grade trip to Baltimore's Great Blacks in Wax Museum next week also was scrapped, Truffer said.

"It's not that we're expecting something to happen, particularly to the Great Blacks in Wax Museum, but if something happens at the Inner Harbor, then I've got 100 kids sitting in the middle of Baltimore City and they can't get out," he said.

Officials said they will review the trip policy on a weekly basis and revise it as security concerns change.

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