Seattle Public Schools

Community Safety Concerns and Resources

Summary: SPS principals, district leaders, and the Safety and Security team are working with SPD and city officials to support the safety of our students.

Dear SPS families and staff,

There have been several reports to the Seattle Police Department (SPD) about incidents involving Seattle Public Schools (SPS) students who have been accosted or mugged while walking in the community.

These incidents and those involving gun violence in our larger metro community have understandably raised concerns. While these incidents did not occur on SPS campuses, our school and district staff take the safety of our students and school staff very seriously.

SPS principals, district leaders, and the district’s Safety and Security team are working with SPD and city officials to support the safety and well-being of our school communities.

The police department has responded and deployed detectives to handle the investigation.

Safety Tips for Students, Families, and Staff

We encourage you to talk with your family about personal safety. Here are some resources that may be useful for these conversations:

  • If you see or experience a crime, call 911 immediately.
  • Stay alert to your surroundings. Encourage students to plan their route, travel together on well-traveled roads and avoid low-traffic side streets when possible.
  • Encourage students to put away their cell phones while walking. Electronics should be out of sight, and jewelry worn discreetly.
  • Develop a plan before trouble occurs
    • Crossing a street or entering a store may get you out of a potentially bad situation.
    • If a car follows you or beckons you while you are walking, do not approach it. Instead, turn and quickly walk in the opposite direction.
  • Consider wearing clothing and shoes that allow free and quick movement.

Community Resources

District Campus Safety Updates

While the reported incidents happened off school grounds, SPS continues work on safety improvements in all schools. We launched a mobile phone app that provides easy access for our community to report safety concerns. We updated signage for all our schools to help students, staff, and visitors remember and follow safety procedures.

Our staff participated in training to promote safety practices and de-escalation techniques. We are working with our school principals to increase support for our campus or building safety teams. We are providing additional mental health resources in our middle and high schools and partnering with the City of Seattle for Reach Out Seattle, a youth mental health wellness initiative.

We have gathered more information about Safe and Welcoming Schools on our district website.

We all play a role in our community and school campus safety.

The SPD has requested anyone with information about the SPD cases related to student safety in the community to please call the Violent Crimes Tip Line at 206-233-5000.

You can use the SPS Safe Schools Hotline at 206-252-0510 to report any threats to SPS campus. This phone number is managed year-round, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Sincerely,

Bev Redmond
Chief of Staff
Seattle Public Schools

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