Student & Parent School Safety Partnership

Parents and Students are Important School Safety Partners 

School safety is not something we can do alone -  in addition to the Irvine Police Department and other law enforcement agencies, IUSD parents and students also play an important role in helping to keep our schools safe.  Please take a moment to review and discuss the following information with your family.  By working together, we can help provide students a safe and healthy learning environment.

Important Safety Reminders from the District and Schools 
  • We ask for your support in reminding students to please take all drills seriously, follow law enforcement, teacher and site administrator instructions, and if they see something, say something - it is the best deterrent to potentially harmful situations. We want everyone on our campus, including parents and guardians to be empowered to report any unusual or suspicious activity to school staff, the Irvine Police Department, a trusted adult or through the Say Something Anonymous Reporting SystemFor emgergencies, call 911 first. 
  • In the case of an emergency at our schools, Staying Connected to IUSD is as easy as 1,2,3.  
  • Please ensure that your child’s school has your most current contact information on file – email and phone are crucial.  Also, make sure your designated emergency contacts and who is authorized to pick up your student is up to date.  Visit the Parent Portal to review the information you have provided.  
  • If your child needs mental health and wellness supports, please do not hesitate to reach out to your school site.  You may also visit our Prevention and Intervention webpage for detailed information about resources, services and supports. Tips to Help Prevent School Violence
  • Talk to Your Children. Keeping the lines of communication open with your children and teens is an important step to keeping involved in their schoolwork, friends, and activities. Ask open-ended questions and use phrases such as "tell me more" and "what do you think?" Phrases like these show your children that you are listening and that you want to hear more about their opinions, ideas, and how they view the world.  Start important discussions with your children—about violence, smoking, drugs, sex, drinking, death—even if the topics are difficult or embarrassing.  Don't wait for your children or teens to come to you.
  • Set Clear Rules and Limits for Your Children.  Children need clearly defined rules and limits set for them so that they know what is expected of them and the consequences for not complying. When setting family rules and limits, be sure children understand the purpose behind the rules and be consistent in enforcing them.  Discipline is more effective if children have been involved in establishing the rules and, oftentimes, in deciding the consequences. Remember to be fair and flexible—as your children grow older, they become ready for expanded rights and changes in rules and limits. Show your children through your actions how to adhere to rules and regulations, be responsible, have empathy toward others, control anger, and manage stress.
  • Know the Warning Signs.  Knowing what's normal behavior for your son or daughter can help you recognize even small changes in behavior and give you an early warning that something is troubling your child.  Sudden changes—from subtle to dramatic—should alert parents to potential problems. These could include withdrawal from friends, decline in grades, abruptly quitting sports or clubs the child had previously enjoyed, sleep disruptions, eating problems, evasiveness, lying, and chronic physical complaints (stomachache or headaches).
  • Don't Be Afraid to Parent; Know When to Intervene.  Parents need to step in and intervene when children exhibit behavior or attitudes that could potentially harm them or others. And you don't have to deal with problems alone—the most effective interventions have parent, school, and health professionals working together to provide on-going monitoring and support.
  • Stay Involved in Your Child's School.  Show your children you believe education is important and that you want your children to do their best in school by being involved in their education. Get to know your child's teachers and help them get to know you and your child. Communicate with your child's teachers throughout the school year, not just when problems arise. Stay informed of school events, class projects, and homework assignments. Attend all parent orientation activities and parent-teacher conferences. Volunteer to assist with school functions and join your local PTA.
Sandy Hook Promise: Know the Warning Signs

People who hurt themselves or others often show warning signs before they carry out an act of violence. If you don’t know what to look for, it can be easy to miss the signs, or dismiss them as unimportant. Significantly, missing the signs can have tragic consequences. Notably, in 4 out of 5 school shootings, at least one other person had knowledge of the attacker’s plan but failed to report it.

Now more than ever, it’s essential to know the signs. Students and educators who participate in our Say Something program learn these life-saving warning signs. They’re taught to recognize signs and get help when their classmates show they may be in danger or need help. Warning signs can include things such as thoughts, feelings, actions, and behaviors. At-risk people can show significant or sudden changes in behavior or personality.  (IUSD participates in the Sandy Hook Promise program.  You can access the Say Something Anonymous Reporting System by clicking here.)

NINE Critical Warning Signs of Violence

Here is our (Sandy Hook Promise) list of nine potential warning signs* that can signal an individual may be in crisis or need help:

  1. Suddenly withdrawing from friends, family and activities (including online or via social media)
  2. Bullying, especially if targeted towards differences in race, religion, gender or sexual orientation 
  3. Excessive irritability, lack of patience, or becoming angry quickly
  4. Experiencing chronic loneliness or social isolation 
  5. Expressing persistent thoughts of harming themselves or someone else
  6. Making direct threats toward a place, another person, or themselves
  7. Bragging about access to guns or weapons
  8. Recruiting accomplices or audiences for an attack 
  9. Directly expressing a threat as a plan 

NOTE: This isn’t a complete list of all warning signs. Exhibiting one of these signs doesn’t necessarily indicate imminent violence. When concerned about troubling behaviors, tell a trusted adult or call 911 if there is an immediate threat.

 Irvine Police Department Firearm Safety Information

According to the Irvine Police Department, if you own a firearm, its safe storage is one of your most important responsibilities. As such, gun owners must always secure their firearm and ammunition so they are not accessible to children or other unauthorized persons.  To learn more about firearm safety, visit the Irvine Police Department's Firearm Safety Webpage, which includes the following information:

  • Tips for Parents
  • Basic Safety Rules
  • Free Cable Locks for Firearms
  • Gun Take Back Program
Mental Health and Wellness

For inforamtion about IUSD's mental health and wellness resources, supports and services visit our Prevention and Intervention webpage.  Every student's voice matters, so please speak up, because we care.