Fair Notice: Student Threat Assessment Protocol
The Board of Education has a responsibility to establish expectations of student conduct in schools as part of its governance role for the District. The Board believes that the responsibility for creating a safe, caring, and orderly learning environment must be shared by students, staff and parents. To support these aims, the Board has established both a District Code of Conduct for Students and a Threat Assessment Protocol for all schools.
The Abbotsford School District is dedicated to the creation and maintenance of school environments where all students, parents, staff, and visitors are safe. In keeping with this commitment, we have established district protocols, in partnership with the Abbotsford Police, for dealing with threats to members of the school community and/or school facilities. A threat is an expression of intent to do harm or act out violently, and may be verbal, gestural, written, drawn, or posted online. We take all threatening comments and behaviours seriously.
Often when we hear in the media about a violent incident, we learn that the threat-maker had made threats in advance of acting violently. To keep our school communities safe, students, staff, parents, and community members have a duty to report all threatening comments and behaviours.
When knowledge of a threat comes to light, the school’s threat assessment team will investigate and appropriately enact the District’s Violence Threat Risk Assessment Protocol. The purpose of the threat assessment is to:
- Ensure the safety of students, staff, parents, and others;
- Ensure a full understanding of the context of the threat;
- Understand the factors contributing to the threat maker’s behaviour;
- Be proactive in developing an intervention plan that addresses the emotional and physical safety of the threat maker and others.
Once the threat assessment process has been initiated, information will be collected from a variety of sources, and interviews may be held with the student(s), the threat-maker, parents and staff to determine the level of risk and develop an appropriate response. Intervention plans will be developed and shared as required. The School District is subject to personal information privacy laws and will undertake the collection of this information in compliance with the requirements of such laws. Should you as a parent be invited to attend a meeting to discuss safety concerns regarding your child, please be assured that the primary goal of this meeting is to ensure safety.
With your assistance, we will ensure that our schools are safe as we create the most inclusive learning environments for all students in our district.
Dr. Kevin Godden
Superintendent of Schools