A small fire at Casper's Natrona County High School caused afternoon classes to be dismissed and students to be sent home.

According to Assistant Principal Mike Pickett, fire alarms went off at 1:23 Friday afternoon, causing the school to be evacuated.  Witnesses report a strong smell of smoke emanating from the Southwestern side of the school.

Pickett goes on to say that an electrical chase in a restroom at the school is believed to have been on fire at the time.  Casper Fire EMS arrived on the scene and extinguished the flames, and began ventilating the first floor where the restroom was located.

The decision was made to release the students for the day.  Faculty and students were given the clear to re-enter the school's cafeteria, to wait for rides home away from the cold conditions outside.

Parents of students were notified through several channels of communication.

Classes are still planned to take place on Monday, as scheduled.

"This is why we practice, and practice, and practice just for these events.  Because in a situation where it is real, everyone knows what to do and how to handle themselves," says Pickett.  "Everyone was safe, no one was hurt and everything turned out the way it was supposed to."

Pickett also explained that since school was in session past one o'clock, the day will not have to be made up at the end of the school year.