The independent London newspaper

Security reviewed at schools after intruder breaks into William Ellis

28 September, 2017 — By Dan Carrier

SECURITY is being reviewed after an intruder broke into a secondary school armed with a knife.

One pupil was hurt at William Ellis School in Highgate Road on Friday morning after a middle-aged woman got inside by following sixth-formers through the security gate.

She fled before police arrived but officers said she was traced two days later and detained under the Mental Health Act. She is currently receiving treatment. Officers said a female teacher had suffered a small injury to her leg when the intruder threw a knife through an open door, but did not require hospital treatment. The school said she had been quickly stopped by staff after she began threatening staff and pupils.

Headteacher Sam White said in a letter to parents that it had been a “serious incident” but also an “exceptional occurrence”, adding: “A middle-aged female entered the school by tailgating sixth-form students entering the building at 10.45 this morning. The alarm was raised immediately that a suspected intruder was on site and staff responded straight away.”

He added: “She was threatening and abusive to some of our students and staff, and caused minor injuries to a Year 10 boy and some damage to school property. As far as I am aware she is not known to anyone in the school community.” Mr White said security had been improved at the school with a new entrance. He added: “Nevertheless this intruder was able to get into the building today and we will be reviewing arrangements for sixth-form entrance and exit to the building.”

A Town Hall spokesman confirmed they had contacted the borough’s schools since the incident.

Education chief Labour councillor Angela Mason said: “Following the serious incident on Friday we can now reassure schools that the perpetrator has been arrested and detained. “We are reminding all Camden schools of the importance of site security and to remain vigilant. We will review the security arrangements with them in light of this particular incident.”

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