'Tis the Season of Giving in Lake Washington School District (LWSD). Each year schools and district buildings across LWSD think of ways to benefit those most in need during the holiday season.
Procedures for Threats of Violence or Harm
Staff, students, volunteers, and others involved in school activities have the responsibility to report any threats of violence or harm to designated school officials. Based on the significance and credibility of the threat, it shall be reported to law enforcement. Staff shall involve administration in evaluating the threat and the needs of the person making the threat. Consultation with or referrals to community-based professionals and services are encouraged where appropriate.
Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act the district may only release student records, including those involving threats of violence or harm, with parent or adult student permission, or under limited conditions. For that reason, the district will not identify students who have made threats of violence or harm when notifying the subjects of the threats, except under the following conditions:
- The parent or adult student has given permission to disclose the student’s identity or other information to the subject of the student’s threat.
- The identity of the student and the details of the threat are being disclosed to relevant district staff who have been determined to have legitimate educational interest in the information.
- The identity of the student or the details of the threat are being released because the release of the information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals. This exemption is to be strictly construed pursuant to federal regulations.
- The district is responding to a court order or subpoena. Generally the district must make a reasonable effort to notify the parents of the student or adult student of the subpoena in advance of complying so that the family can seek protective action.
Relevant information about the threat that does not improperly identify a student shall be provided to the subject of the threat, and the subject shall be advised that if law enforcement has been involved in the matter, the law enforcement agency may have more information that can be shared with the subject.
To promote the safety of all concerned, the principal shall determine if classroom teachers, school staff, school security, and others working with the student(s) involved in the threat circumstance should be notified. Subject to the confidentiality provisions cited above, principals shall consider all available information when determining the extent of information to be shared, including prior disciplinary records, official juvenile court records, and documented history of violence of the person who made the threat.
When considering the appropriate disciplinary action for a student who has made a threat of violence or harm, the student’s prior disciplinary records shall be taken into account.
If the threat by a student was significant and credible enough to warrant emergency expulsion or suspension, the student may only be readmitted to the district through the readmission application process provided for in district policy. The readmission application process shall include meeting district readmission criteria established at the time of expulsion or suspension and should include completion of an assessment by an appropriate professional, with a report to the district, when the district determines such an assessment is necessary.
Disciplinary action for district staff for making threats of violence or harm shall be consistent with district policy and procedure regarding staff discipline and any relevant collective bargaining requirements..