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Dear Jefferson Families and Staff,
Yesterday, the Marion County Sheriff’s Department (MCSD) received a call from a person threatening to cause violence at Jefferson High School. A Deputy assigned to Jefferson was dispatched and was at the school within minutes and the school went into Lockdown, meaning that all students and staff remained in a locked classroom.
This occurred right as school was getting out and students from the elementary school and middle school were on or loading onto buses. Marion County Sheriff Deputies required all students to return to the school so that the perimeter could be secured. Students were calm, organized and cooperative. All elementary and middle school students on the buses went into the middle school. They were placed in classrooms according to their bus number so that they could be easily released. The middle school was in Lockout, meaning that all doors to the outside were locked. Multiple sheriff deputies were on site securing the perimeter and working closely with district leadership.
Students returning from Willamette Career Academy were enroute and diverted to the District Office where they stayed in lockout with district personnel. Jefferson elementary school had no students at the school, and staff remained in Lockout. Students practicing on the track remained with their teacher in the grandstand and the district coordinated with Marion County Sheriff’s to ensure their safety. The District worked with Marion County’s Communications Team and the team at Willamette Education Service District to get out timely messages to parents.
Once the perimeter was secured, MCSD was working to trace the call and found that it had originated from another state. District leadership were informed that it was most likely a ‘swatting’ incident, which is a practice of making a prank call to emergency services in an attempt to bring about the dispatch of a large number of armed police officers to a particular location.
Once the Lieutenant at the scene gave the all clear, the district began a controlled release, beginning with loading the elementary and middle school students onto the buses, followed by the high school bus riders. Buses were released and the other students driving their own car or waiting for a parent to pick them up were allowed to leave.
The Superintendent worked with principals in getting out a follow up message in the evening to parents through Blackboard and Class Dojo.
JSD invited mental health professionals from the Willamette Education Service District to come to the schools this morning to support students and staff who might be traumatized by this event.
While these kinds of events are scary, they are unfortunately a part of our lives and we drill regularly as a precaution. We are very proud of how quickly and effectively staff and students reacted to this situation, especially given the timing of dismissal. It was orderly, calm, efficient and cooperative.
We would like to thank our bus drivers and transportation leadership for their cooperation and support. We would like to thank the swift and incredible response by the Marion County Sheriff’s Department. We would like to thank all district employees involved in supporting students. We would like to thank our students for their cooperation and resiliency. We would like to thank district leadership for working together as a solid team. We would like to thank our partners at the WESD for their support. Most importantly, we would like to thank parents for your patience and cooperation and understanding. These events are scary and we appreciate your trust in our ability to keep your children safe.
Brad Capener, Superintendent
Jefferson School District
We are systematically releasing students as orderly as possible. Students are being moved to buses to be taken home. MCSO deputies are remaining on the scene as a safety presence. Their investigation is ongoing as to the origin of the telephonic threat.
Students are safe but JHS and JMS are currently on lockdown. Marion County deputies are on the scene. Students will be loaded onto buses and released once Marion County gives us the all-clear.
Mid-Willamette Valley Job Fair
Due to winter conditions, all schools and school activities will be closed today. 2-28-2023
You can find current YouthTruth Data by clicking on "Community", then "JSD YouthTruth Data". Or you can click here.
YouthTruth data will be posted after being presented to the School Board.
Community Data was posted on January 11, 2023.
Student Data will be posted by February 10, 2023.
Staff Data will be posted by March 10, 2023.
Dear Jefferson Community,
We thank you for your continued patience as Jefferson High School conducts its investigation into the incident that took place at the football game, on September 23, 2022.
In our conversations with students and parents regarding student safety, we have identified two concerns being brought up repeatedly that we would like to address.
The first involves the incident at the high school football game on September 23rd. Parents have been reaching out, wanting to know specific information on what actions and decisions are being made pertaining to a student. They have expressed anger and frustration due to the lack of specific information being shared. As we have shared both in formal communications and in person, the school administration is not permitted by law to share private information about a student. What we can share with you is that we are following our policies and procedures laid out in law, and we have a team of outside experts supporting and guiding us through this process. The safety of our students is our primary concern and focus.
The second concern being expressed by some parents and students, is that our schools are not safe because we don’t follow up on complaints or issues that arise. There is a perception that nothing is ever done. While that may be the perception held by some, I want all of our concerned parents and students to know that we do follow up on every incident that is reported to us. Not only do we follow up on every concern brought up, but we take every concern very seriously. Our principals and assistant principals, athletic director, coaches and teachers, all have something in common: They want every student to feel safe and to thrive in school.
Our professional adults care deeply about every child and they work tirelessly, as a team, to achieve that outcome. Again, due to privacy laws, students or parents may not know the discipline outcomes that are given, or what threat assessments were conducted, or what preventative measures have been put into place to protect students. But that does not mean the school has ignored the situation. Again, every concern, complaint, issue, or incident is followed up with and investigated completely. Our educators and administrators are amazing, conscientious individuals and they deserve our gratitude for the hard work they do every day to keep our students safe.
Finally, as we shared with our high school students today, if the adults in the school are not aware of a potential problem or concern, then we are not able to act on it. We invite our students to come forward when they see or hear of something that concerns them. We have provided a link to SafeOregon (https://www.safeoregon.com/), so students can make their concerns known with their names or anonymously.
If you are interested in reading what was provided to students today, please read Student Communication (https://drive.google.com/file/d/1KfYEOwffEFkfG4q4vosa_KRVjPbovfRD/view?usp=sharing).
Jefferson School District
Dear Jefferson Community,
Today, a number of students gathered outside of school to exercise their constitutional right to free speech. When incidents occur that involve violence, as happened last Friday, parents and students want to know what the school is doing specifically about the situation.
Our inability to share specific details with students and parents is frustrating, we understand that. Students gave voice to their frustrations and two of our administrators listened and took notes. Following the peaceful and orderly demonstration, students returned to class.
Jefferson high school will be engaging with students in the coming weeks and months to further listen and understand their feelings of fear, anxiety, and frustration. Whether the issues involve student safety, racism, bullying, identity, we are here to be listeners and problem-solvers.
We invite our students to engage in dialogue with us - to be leaders, to be listeners, and to help make Jefferson High School a place where all students feel safe, welcome, and included.
In addition to the listening sessions we will be creating, our Youth Truth survey comes out in October which will be another opportunity for students and parents to share their feelings. This data will help us understand how people are feeling so we can build more support and avenues of communication. In fact, JHS is developing its student leadership for this very purpose.
To our students, please know that you were heard. Please give us the opportunity to build pathways for better understanding and communication. Thank you.
Brad Capener, Superintendent
Jefferson School District
Good Morning Jefferson Families and Community,
We have some unfortunate news this morning regarding our football game against Santiam Christian tonight. Due to a sickness that has gone through the team and a few injuries that have come up over the past week, we are now below the minimum number of players to compete.
After consulting with the coaching staff, school administration, and the district office, we have decided to forfeit the game tonight due to our low numbers and for our athlete’s safety and health.
Deciding to forfeit a game is a difficult decision and we understand how disappointing and difficult that is for our team and our fans. But we look forward to seeing our Lions fully recovered and back on the field next Friday, October 7, as we take on Amity right here at home. For all of our players and parents of the players, we wish you the best as you recover from these illnesses and injuries, and please do not hesitate to reach out to Mr. Naugle, our Athletic Director, if you have any immediate concerns.
Thank you for your ongoing support of our athletes, Jefferson!
The High School Administration Team
Doug Naugle 541-327-3337 ex 1256
Dear Jefferson Families,
The school district understands that when an incident of violence takes place, parents want answers to ensure their child will be safe in school. That is completely reasonable.
I think it is important to convey that by law and for ethical reasons, we are not able to provide details related to individual students. Whether a student is in school, or what consequences were given, if any, all fall under The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
While we cannot provide details on an ongoing investigation, we can say that Jefferson High School is doing everything it can to keep your children safe. Please know that we are taking this situation very seriously.
We have increased adult presence and supervision when students are out of classrooms.
Our administrators are working on this issue with complete focus and intention.
We are working with the Willamette Education Service District’s (WESD)Threat Assessment Team. These are experts in school safety and they help schools make informed decisions related to school safety.
Marion County Sheriff’s Department has an ongoing investigation into this incident
Jefferson School District is conducting its own investigation.
For students who are scared or traumatized by the event, we have counselors and adult mental health professionals available to them. We encourage any student with any information regarding this incident, or any safety related incident we appreciate them coming forward to a school administrator or counselor. Any information shared is confidential.
While these incidents are scary, I appreciate our students, staff and families working together to
maintain a sense of calm, and trust that we are handling the situation. Also, I think it is important to remember that many details on social media are not accurate.
We are taking multiple steps to ensure your child or children are safe in school. We believe our students are safe to be in our schools at this time, and we are doing everything within our scope to ensure their safety.
Brad Capener, Superintendent
Jefferson School District
Jefferson School District 14J
COVID-19 Protocols for Students
As COVID-19 continues to be part of our daily lives, we will continually assess district operations and facilities to prioritize health and safety. The following information is meant to be an overview. If you have questions don’t hesitate to reach out to Cathy Emmert at 541-327-3337 ext. 1011.
Face Coverings: Currently face coverings are optional for students, staff and visitors. We will continue to monitor Marion County’s community case rate data. When our county moves to high risk, we will consult with the Marion County Health Department regarding face coverings.We will provide a face covering to any individual who chooses to wear one.
Sick Child/Positive Covid Cases: It is important to keep your child home when they are sick. If they test positive for COVID-19 make sure to report your student(s) positive COVID case to the building where they attend school. Someone will help you determine their return to school. For most cases, students will be able to return on day 6 if symptoms have resolved, but will need to wear a mask at all times (including on the bus) from day 6-10.
Contact Tracing: We will notify you if we are aware that your student has been in close contact with a person who tests positive for COVID-19 at school. If your child has been in close contact with someone who tests positive, closely monitor them for symptoms, but they do not have to quarantine. We will report all absenteeism numbers meeting the threshold, to MCHD.
Volunteers (anyone that interacts with students on a volunteer basis): All volunteers must be able to show proof of vaccination to work with, and ensure the safety of all students. As a matter of practice, exceptions are not accepted due to time and effort involved in managing requests and maintaining them with limited staff resources. Exceptions to this rule must be made to the Superintendent by the school Principal in charge of the event at least three (3) -weeks in advance of the event.
1.) Once an exception is approved by the Superintendent, the volunteer must then provide to the District Office one of the two available options:
a.) If available, have the designated school personnel provide a rapid test on the day of the event.
b.)Provide a negative COVID test prior to the trip. The PCR test is at the expense of volunteer.
2.)Volunteers with an exception may be asked to wear a mask and/or distance themselves by 3-feet from the students.
Hand Sanitizing: Regular hand washing and hand sanitizing will be encouraged. Hand sanitizer will be available in each building.
Learning Environments: We will continue to maintain clean learning environments and working environments.
Social Distancing: We will continue to space students whenever possible. When appropriate, learning activities will be moved outdoors.
COVID-19 Testing: COVID testing will be conducted on premises with parent permission. We will also offer drive-through testing options (for students with parent permission) if needed.
Air Filtration: We will continue to use special air filters, air filtration systems in certain areas, and fresh air whenever possible in district facilities.
Health Authority: We will consult with the Marion County Health Department and Oregon Department of Education whenever necessary. We will adapt our plans as needed.