April 2, 2015
Dear Parents and Guardians:
In a situation much like yesterday, a bomb threat was sent to school today. Unlike yesterday, today’s threat was received by email. While such threats are almost always hoaxes, schools must take all threats seriously.
Our highest priority is the safety and security of our students and staff. Federal Way Police and the district’s security officers searched the school, and like yesterday, they found an item they wanted to look at more closely. At that point, we decided to dismiss school early.
In keeping with police and hazard response protocol in bomb threat situations, as the school was evacuated students were instructed to leave personal belongings like backpacks in the school. This protocol is designed to prevent a real bomb or device from being moved from inside the building to where students were gathered outside. As a result, students whose car keys were in backpacks, purses, etc., were not able to drive their cars. Due to the threat, school buses were not allowed in the bus loop and had to park along 16th Avenue. That, coupled with the large number of parents driving to the school to pick up students, produced serious traffic issues. This also resulted in buses running late throughout the district.
Unfortunately, this was all due to another hoax, which is very possibly the work of a student who wanted to disrupt the school day. While this individual probably thought he or she was playing a harmless joke, there are serious repercussions. The investigations into yesterday’s graffiti threat, as well as today’s email threat, are both ongoing. We will make every effort to determine who is responsible for these threats. If that person is found to be a student, he or she faces discipline, including expulsion. The district will cooperate fully with the police department and the prosecuting attorney’s office, and vigorously supports the arrest and prosecution of the person or persons responsible. Individuals determined to be responsible for bomb hoaxes and similar threats toward schools face legal prosecution including class “B” felony charges.
I wish we could guarantee this won’t happen again. We need the help of our students, parents and guardians. If you or your student know who may be responsible for these threats, please report it to our office, or call or text the Safe Schools Tipline (253.945.SAFE). The tipline provides an anonymous and easy way to report concerns regarding safety of our staff and students, or knowledge of illegal activities, at any time of the day or night. If you have any questions or information, please feel free to contact me at 253.945.2570.
Joni Hall, Principal
Letter in Spanish