Posted on September 29th, 2017
Elk Island Public Schools is committed to creating and maintaining school environments in which students, staff, parents/guardians and others feel safe. Schools cannot ignore any threats of violence.
The complete Violence Threat Risk Assessment protocol is on the EIPS website.
What is a duty to report?
To keep school communities safe and caring, staff, parents/guardians, students and community members must report all threat related behaviours to the school principal.
What is a threat?
- An expression of intent to do harm or act out violently against someone or something
- May be verbal, written, drawn, posted on the Internet, or made by gesture
What behaviours warrant a Student Violence Threat Risk Assessment be initiated?
- Serious violence or violence with intent to harm or kill
- Verbal or written threats to seriously harm or kill others or cause significant property damage (clear, direct, plausible)
- Internet, website and social media threats to seriously harm others
- Possession of weapons—including replicas
- Bomb threats—making and/or detonating explosive devices
- Fire setting
- Sexual intimidation or assault
- Extreme cases of bullying and harassment
- Gang-related intimidation and violence
- Rehearsal behaviours or evidence of planning
- Hate incidents motivated by factors such as race, culture, religion or sexual orientation
What is the purpose of a Student Violence Threat Risk Assessment?
- To ensure and promote the emotional and physical safety of students, staff, parents, the student making the threat, and others
- To ensure a full understanding of the context of the threat
- To understand the factors that contribute to the threat maker’s behaviour
- To be proactive in developing an intervention plan that addresses the emotional and physical safety of the threat maker
- To promote the emotional and physical safety of all
Who is on a threat assessment team?
Each school has a multi-disciplinary VTRA team who have received training from the Canadian Center for Threat Assessment and Trauma Response. The team may include the school principal or assistant principal, school counsellor, EIPS Supports for Students consultant, the RCMP, Alberta Health Services Mental Health, Children’s Services, the student, parents/guardians and others.
Can I refuse to participate?
It is important for all parties to engage in the process. If for some reason there is a reluctance to participate by the threat maker or parent/guardian, the threat assessment will continue to ensure a safe and caring environment for all.
Who are the partners?
Education partners are committed to creating and maintaining school environments in which students, staff, parents/guardians and others feel safe. Elk Island Public Schools, Elk Island Catholic Schools, and New Horizons School are education partners in our region.
Government agency partners play an active role in a comprehensive intervention plan to support our young people. The RCMP, Alberta Human Services Addiction and Mental Health, and Children’s Services are key to determining the level of risk a young person may pose.
Community Agency partners provide services that are regularly included as part of the intervention plans. Strathcona County, Fort Saskatchewan, Lamont County and Vegreville support this co-ordinated response to any violence or threats of violence.
What do parents and students need to know.
- Any threat must be reported to the school principal
- Investigation may involve the school counsellor, the police, or other community agencies
- Investigation may involve locker or personal property searches
- Interviews will be held with the threat maker and other students or adults who may have information about the threat
- Parents of students who are directly involved will be notified
- Threatening behaviour may result in disciplinary action
- An intervention plan may be developed for the student making the threat and a support plan developed for any individuals targeted by threats
The Canadian Centre for Threat Assessment and Trauma Response has completed extensive research in youth and school violence. Kevin Cameron, the director, has trained local partner personnel in the use of the protocol.
- Aboriginal Parent Link - Native Counselling Services of Alberta
- Alberta Health Services – Childrens’ Mental Health
- Alberta Human Services – Children & Family Services
- Alberta Parenting for the Future
- Canadian Center for Threat Assessment and Trauma Response
- City of Fort Sask
- County of Minburn
- Elk Island Catholic Schools
- Family and Community Support Services – City of Fort Saskatchewan
- Family and Community Support Services – Strathcona County
- Family and Community Support Services – Lamont County
- Family and Community Support Services – Town of Vegreville
- Lamont County
- New Horizons
- Strathcona County
- Town of Lamont
- Town of Bruderheim
- Town of Mundare
- Town of Vegreville
- Village of Andrew
Student Violence Threat Risk Assessment Programs & Services
For more information contact:
Elk Island Public Schools – Supports for Students