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Chester Elementary Principal calls for parent information meeting regarding school incident

By Gregg Scott

Staff Writer

Due to a myriad of calls from Chester Elementary School parents, principal Scott Cory asked Plumas Unified School District Superintendent Bill Roderick to come to Chester and meet with parents to answer questions about a Jan. 25 student ‘incident’ at the school.  The incident consisted of a verbal threat from one student to another.  At the outset of the meeting, several questions were about why the parents weren’t notified until the next morning. Superintendent Broderick explained that the protocols set up at the district were not followed exactly, which caused some confusion and delay in the process.

He also stated that a better understanding of when these protocols are to be used will ensure that this type of delay should never happen again, and that certain schedule changes and supervisory assignments had already been put in place at the school to enhance student monitoring.  He then gave an overview of the district’s response protocols for any threat incident: (Paraphrased)

  1. Secure student if on campus.
  2. Notify law enforcement and Plumas District office.
  3. District office will notify parents.
  4. Law enforcement will evaluate incident for credibility. (Only law enforcement can make that determination)
  5. Upon receiving law enforcement determination, the district will provide further actions.

Roderick stressed that student safety was the number one priority of the district and administration of every Plumas County school. He also spent quite a bit of time trying to explain the state mandated laws and protocols the district must follow. Some at the meeting seemed to think that some of those laws were not good for their students. It was quickly noted that those laws can only be revised at the state level. (State Board of Education and State Legislature)

As time went on, some questioners were searching for more information about this particular event and what was being done to the offending student. Roderick explained that those facts are strictly confidential according to the law.  Other questioners asked what was being done to prevent future incidents. There was even a veiled suggestion that maybe the district should be looking into metal detectors and daily searches.

Principal Cory thanked Superintendent Roderick and Meghan Daun, the district’s Human Resources Supervisor, for coming up and explaining the way these types of events will be handled. He also thanked California Highway Patrol Sgt. Lacey Carney and officer Taylor Fountain for their support of the school.

The parting message was that if there are any further questions both Principal Cory and Superintendent Roderick are ready to respond.

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