Daily Archives: October 16, 2016

Fair Notice to Parents/Gurardians

 Fair Notice to Parents/Guardians

In the event of a serious threat to the wellbeing of students or staff, A Violence, Threat and Risk Assessment (VTRA) Protocol will be initiated.

A threat is an expression of intent to do harm or act out violently against someone or something. Threats may be verbal, written, drawn, posted on the Internet or made by gesture. Threats must be taken seriously, investigated and responded to.  If the threat is immediate, the RCMP will be called upon to deal with the threat immediately.

 What is the purpose of a student threat assessment?

  • To ensure the safety of students, staff, parents and others.
  • To ensure a full understanding of the context of the threat.
  • To understand factors contributing to the threat makers’ behaviour.
  • To promote the emotional and physical safety of all.
  • To be proactive in developing an intervention plan that addresses the emotional and physical safety of the threat maker.

What behaviours initiate a VTRA?

A VTRA will be initiated when behaviours include, but are not limited to, serious violence or violence with intent to harm or kill, verbal/written threats to harm/kill others, Internet website/social media threats to harm/kill others, possession of weapons (including replicas), bomb threats and fire setting.

Duty to report

To keep school communities safe and caring, staff, parents, students and community members must report all threat‐related behaviours to the principal and/or the RCMP.

VTRA Teams at each school

Each school will have a multi-disciplinary threat assessment team. The team may include members of school staff and members from district and community agencies.

What happens in a student threat assessment?

All threat making behaviour by a student shall be reported to the principal who will activate the protocol for the initial response. Once the team has been activated, 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 to the incident. Intervention plans will be developed and shared with parents, staff and students as required.

Can I refuse to participate in a threat assessment process?

It is important for all parties to engage in the process. However, if for some reason there is a reluctance to participate in the process by the threat maker or parent / guardian, the threat assessment process will continue in order to promote a safe and caring learning environment.

Reporting on Student Progress

Parents are being asked for their opinions on reporting student progress until February 28, 2017. This will help shape what information parents and guardians receive and how they receive it. Please see the attached  Letter from Minister Bernier.

You can learn more about the engagement at engage.gov.bc.ca/yourkidsprogress .

Additionally, in the coming weeks and months, community meetings and focus groups will take place in many communities around the province, providing in-person opportunities for families and community members to share their thoughts on student reporting. Ministry of Education staff are currently working with host school districts to set up the 10 community meetings and will keep you informed of their dates and locations as they are finalized. A community meeting in Dawson Creek is being scheduled for the week of Novemebr 21 – 25.  The exact date, time and location will be posted very soon.

All feedback from this important public engagement process will be considered while a provincial student reporting approach is finalized. A summary report on what was heard from parents during the engagement will be produced and posted publicly online in June 2017.