"We've taken four people into custody as a result of an undercover drug investigation," said Manheim Township Police Sgt. Tom Rudzinski. "We plan on taking some more into custody."
District spokeswoman Marcie Brody said all four attended the school, but she would not say what grade they are in.
"I can confirm the township police department did leave the building with four students," she said.
Rudzinski declined to say what type of drugs, if any, had been found or how long the investigation had been going on. He said the four had been taken into custody but had not been charged as of press time late this morning.
"Drug problems are everywhere," Superintendent Gene Freeman said today. "I've worked in three different school districts, and these things happen."
"We are working in conjunction with the township police department to make a safe and secure environment for all of our students," he added.
The busts occurred as police and drug-sniffing dogs moved through the high school in a separate sweep of lockers that forced students to stay in their classrooms for about an hour and 20 minutes, Rudzinski said.
Freeman commended staff and students for their actions today during the arrests and sweep, saying everything happened in an orderly way.
"We're back to a normal day," he said at about 11 a.m., about 30 minutes after students resumed their regular class schedules. "Everything is going normally."
Township police swept into the high school, on School Lane in Neffsville, after students entered their second-period classes shortly after 8:30 this morning. The sweep was planned months ago, Freeman said.
"It's been part of school board policy that we can do random searches of lockers and district property," Brody said. "This was just a routine procedure we decided to enact today."
Freeman said he didn't know anything about the undercover drug investigation.
A source inside the high school said the building was on virtual lockdown during the sweep as teachers instructed students entering their second-period classrooms that they would not be able to leave until further notice.
During the lockdown, township police entered the high school with drug-sniffing dogs and walked them by lockers throughout the building.
Several students were called to the high school office during the sweep, according to two students.
All students were permitted to leave their classrooms at about 9:55 a.m., when the sweep was over.
Brody said such drug sweeps are rare - apparently none have been done in at least three years, said one student. But they are designed to keep students safe, Brody said.