Good afternoon RSD family members and community,
I would like to follow up with you personally regarding last week’s lockdown at Ridgeview High School. Student safety is of utmost priority to the district and we take careful steps to ensure that every situation is managed appropriately and is an opportunity for growth.
On Thursday of last week, the administrators at Ridgeview High School made the decision to place the school on lockdown because of a potential threat to the school. During a lockdown, students are asked to lock their doors, turn off lights and move out of sight in their classroom or other area of the school. At the same time, parents or visitors are not allowed into the building and the entire perimeter of the facility is secure. This preventative measure limits mobility throughout the campus and helps to keep staff and students safe. During last week’s lockdown, law enforcement quickly located the threat off campus and classes resumed shortly thereafter.
I feel that Ridgeview High School administrators and staff made the right call to go into lockdown. Although this particular lockdown went smoothly, we’ve been working to identify areas of growth and ways to do better in the event of the unthinkable. Our district team has held several debriefings with school staff, law enforcement and members of the Safe Schools Alliance here in Central Oregon. We have captured ideas and ways to improve our protocols and will be working hard to ensure these are built into our plans.
As a parent, I understand how frightening it can be to know that your child’s school is in lockdown. I’m sure you are wondering if we are prepared for situations such as this. The district is proud to share that we have trained all district staff on how to respond in the event of an emergency. Redmond School District, in partnership with Redmond Police Department and the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, made the decision to adopt the I Love U Guys Standard Response Protocol for all schools. This program provides clear, simple instructions for students and staff on how to respond in the event of a threat or hazard. This is just one of the many protocols that we use to keep your students safe while in our classrooms.
There are things that you can do to help your student during events such as a lockdown. It can be as simple as sending positive, encouraging texts to your student to keep them calm. We know that although you may be alarmed, during a lockdown it is important to not rush to your child’s school. The area may not be safe and students may be unable to leave the campus. For your safety and for the safety of our students and first responders, please wait for communications and instructions from the district.
We’ll be doing more communication about our protocols to parents and families in the near future. As parents, you are our partners and we want you to be informed in how you can play a role in school safety.
Thank you so much for your time and your support of our students and school staff. It takes each and every one of us to make success possible for all students.
Mike McIntosh, Superintendent