Superintendent's Letter to Parents on School Security

October 3, 2002
Dr. Jerry D. Weast, superintendent of the Montgomery County Public Schools, sent a letter today [Thursday, October 3, 2002] to all parents, students, and staff (via local schools) regarding the events of Thursday, October 3, and assuring them of the continued safety and security of schools.

The letter is available as a PDF file at the link below.

The text from the letter follows.

October 3, 2002

Dear Parents, Students, and Staff:

In light of the tragic events today in Montgomery County, I am writing to inform you of the security procedures that were in place in each school to protect the safety of students and staff.

Each school has school-based plans that can be activated in case of emergencies. A message from my office was sent to all schools early this morning directing principals to implement “Code Blue” emergency procedures that, in essence, assure that all students and staff are accounted for and that exterior doors are locked. All outdoor activities, including recess and open lunch, were canceled. Afternoon kindergarten and pre-kindergarten classes were canceled. Dismissal of morning kindergarten classes was held until the afternoon dismissal times.

During the day, extra care was taken by all principals and staff to ensure that students were safe and that proper security procedures were implemented, in collaboration with Montgomery County Police. Based on the police department’s advice and the recommendations of the county’s emergency management team, it was deemed safe and appropriate to dismiss children from school at the regular time. However, all after school and evening school activities were canceled. Unless otherwise notified, schools will open on time Friday morning, October 4. Normal procedures for announcing any changes will be made to local television and radio news media, cable channel 34, and the school system’s website:

Thank you for your continuing support and trust. Please be assured that the principals, teachers, and support staff of your school system acted with extreme caution and professionalism today, making the safety of our students the number one priority.


Jerry D. Weast, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools

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