Wollongong's St Mary Star of the Sea evacuated after lockdown

11.25am: A text from the school to parents said: "Parents please be advised that there was a bomb threat at the college. It was a hoax and has been cleared by police. Students are returning to the college for normal classes till the end of the day."

11.24am: Wollongong police crime manager Detective Inspector Tim Beattie said a call to triple 000 sparked the police response.

"A little before 9am this morning police received information a threat had been made to a local school, " he said.

"That threat prompted us to respond and evacuate the school and conduct an examination of the school grounds."

Insp Beattie said the threat was taken very seriously and a large police response mounted.

"Today we've involved a considerable amount of resources, not only from the local area command but also the highway traffic command, police rescue and the dog unit also becoming engaged in this operation," he said.

"The resources here today are all about ensuring the school is safe and the students are safe."

11.23am: A school assembly will be held at the school shortly.

11.10am: Staff and students have started re-entering the school.

11.06am: The police cordon has been lifted and students are getting ready to go back to the school.

Principal Dr Frank Pitt said the school planned to go ahead with today's Science Fair.

11.03am: Principal Dr Frank Pitt said it took between three and four minutes to evacuate the school and praised the girls for their ''calm'' manner. Dr Pitt said police were calm when they entered the grounds. 

10.58am: Principal Dr Frank Pitt said the school was contacted by police at about 9.30am and asked to evacuate the premises. He said it took between three and four minutes to evacuate the school and praised the girls for their ''calm'' manner. Dr Pitt said police were calm when they entered the grounds. 

10.52am: There are 1140 students at the school and 120 staff.

10.50am: A parent with a daughter at the school reports that when the girls were evacuated they were instructed to leave everything behind. Bags, lunch the lot.

10.37am: Police said the incident began at about 9am. 

A text sent to parents earlier this morning read: "There is a critical incident at St Mary’s College all students have been evacuated to Lang Park. All students are safe and further information will be provided in due course."

Students have since been moved to WEC.

10.30am: A bomb detection dog is being taken into the school.

10.27am: The school has given no information about parents collecting their daughters at this stage.

10.20am: A police command post has been set up in Market Square.

10.15am: Police have blocked off Harbour Street between Crown and Hinton Street.

10.10am: A mother whose daughter goes to the school said she was told a suspicious package was found at the school which led to the evacuation.

10.05am: A text from a student to her father says: ‘‘police just ran into my class and were like girls get out now and my whole school got evacuated and there are police with guns everything, so scared.’’

10am: The students have been moved from Lang Park to the WIN Entertainment Centre.

Students have reported that police with guns drawn were running through the school. 

9.58am: The school notified parents via text message that the school was in lockdown due to a ‘‘critical incident’’ but said all students were safe.

Students were evacuated while police officers appeared to be searching the school grounds.

9.55am: Students are now assembled at Lang Park. Harbour Street has been blocked off by police at the stadium end.

9.50am: There are reports St Mary Star of the Sea College in Wollongong is being evacuated after earlier reports the school was in lockdown.

It is not known why the school is being evacuated.

A police spokesman said a police operation was being conducted at the school.

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