Riverside Unified School District Safety & Security FAQs

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What has the District done to control visitor/outsider access to schools?

The District has moved to ensure that all schools have a single point of entry/registration for visitors to schools.
Before and after school the number of open gates is limited and staff monitor each open gate. Non-essential gates are closed and locked after student entry and dismissal. Once the instructional day has begun, all visitors & outsiders are required to register in the office to request permission to enter the campus for specified reasons. All visitors and outsiders must sign in and provide ID and a valid reason for visiting. Registration for permission to visit a school campus is required by State law and RUSD Board Policy. The purpose for this is to:

• Reduce disruption to the educational process of the school
• Limit access for those who have no business being on the school grounds, who may disrupt the educational process, or who pose a threat to students and/or staff
• Know who’s on campus
• To control who comes in and out
• In the event of an emergency, account for everyone on campus

The District is planning for installation of an Electronic Visitor Management System for the 2018-2019 school year to better screen visitors on campus (see below). Additionally, Plans are moving forward to provide an additional security system in each school office to prevent access to the campus by aggressive individuals who present a threat to the school.

What plans do the schools have in place to respond to intruders/active shooters?

State Law requires that every school have a Comprehensive Safe School Plan (Site Safety Plan) Revisions to these plans must be submitted to the District by March 1 of each year. Plans are reviewed and approved by each school’s safety committee or school site council.
Comprehensive Safe Schools Plans include sections on site security, child abuse, disaster preparedness, suspension/expulsion, bullying/non- discrimination/harassment, student discipline, notification to teachers, and student dress and grooming.

• Each school site plan includes Active Shooter drills (Mandated 2 per year) (Run, Hide, Fight)
• Plans cover multiple scenarios – earthquakes, wellness, intruders, shooters, lockdowns, lock-outs, etc.
• Disaster preparedness
• Safe school environments

What has the District done to screen visitors/outsiders wishing to enter a school campus or District facility?

Currently State Law and Board Policy require visitors to show their ID to verify who they are and their reason for requesting a visit. Plans are moving forward on plans to install an Electronic Visitor Management System at each District facility. The Electronic Visitor Management System scans a visitor/outsider’s ID against national sexual predator databases by comparing the individual’s name, birthdate, and picture with those found in the databases. The system can also be programed to scan for restraining orders, custody papers, among other things, which may prevent an individual’s access to the school. The system sends alerts to designated staff regarding individuals on the “no visit” list. Those visitors who are cleared to enter the facility are given photo IDs to wear while on campus.

What steps has the Board of Education taken to set expectations for visitors/outsiders on school grounds and District facilities?

The Board of Education has passed Board Policy 1250 Visitors/Outsiders. In the policy the Board of Education encourages interested parents/guardians and community members to visit the schools and participate in the educational program. As required by State Law (Penal Code 627.2, Education Code 32211) and RUSD Policy/Rules and Regulations (BP/RR 1250), ALL visitors are required to register in the office upon entering the school premises during school hours. This requirement includes parents, guardians, RUSD staff not assigned to the school, public employees, volunteers, media, public officials, and all other outsiders/visitors requesting to visit the school. The Board of Education encourages all individuals while on District property or participating in District or school-related activities to assist in maintaining a safe and secure school environment by behaving in an orderly manner, modeling civility and to treating students, parents, community members and District employees with dignity and respect.  In the interest of presenting positive role models to students, the District encourages positive communication, discourages behavior that may appear rude, uncaring, unduly harsh, or insensitive, and will not tolerate volatile, hostile or aggressive actions. The District seeks public and employee cooperation with this endeavor. The District encourages use of its complaint processes to address any concerns with District programs or employees.   

This Policy requires visitor & outsider registration, as well as the adoption of electronic visitor management system

What procedures does the District have in place to identify individuals who pose potential school violence, before a violent act occurs?

Since 2015 RUSD has had a Threat Assessment Protocol in place for assessing students and/or staff who have been identified through their words, behaviors, written correspondence, emails, texts, etc. as potentially posing a threat for school violence or harm to themselves. Once an individual is suspected of potential school violence or self-harm, it is brought to the attention of school staff. A multi-disciplinary team comprised of the site administrator, a SAP counselor, school psychologist, school counselor, teacher, and the School Resource Officer (SRO) meets to do a review of the individual’s background, behavior, communications, etc., and determine a threat level. RPD has its own threat assessment using S.T.A.R. (student threat assessment review). S.T.A.R. is initiated with any site based threat assessment and includes a home visit to determine access to weapons and level of threat from a law enforcement perspective. The results are communicated back to RUSD and include in the site threat assessment. Intervention, threat response plans are put into place depending on the findings of the threat assessment. If the level is determined to be high, the District Threat Assessment Team assembled determine immediate response from the Police and the District.

The Threat Assessment and Suicide Prevention procedures can be found on the District website under Departments/Pupil Services/Safe Schools.

Does the District monitor student social media, computer use for threats of school violence or self-harm?

Software on District computers used by students is automatically filtered and alerts RUSD staff to threats of violence and self-harm. The purpose of this filtering is to prevent student access to unacceptable websites and to notify staff of students who may be at risk of self-harm, school violence, and suicide. Each alert is responded to with a threat or suicide assessment so that the student receives the support and services they need to assist them. The filtering is active 24/7 and parents are notified when the system has alerted staff that their child has been identified as a potential for self-harm or school violence.
Information regarding student use of District technology can be found in the Parent Handbook.

What is the Riverside Police Department’s (RPD) role in monitoring threats of school violence?

RPD monitors Social Media and responds to threats found either by RPD or by RUSD. The role of the Riverside Police Department is to monitor social media for any threats to the city. The Riverside Police Department alert’s RUSD when there is a potential threat involving District students or schools.

Have staff and students been trained on Intruder/Active Shooter procedures?

School Principals have been trained on advanced active shooter procedures called A.L.I.C.E. (Alert, Lockdown, Informing, Counter, Evacuate) A.L.I.C.E. intruder/Active Shooter training includes preparedness for intruder/shooter strategies which go beyond “Run, Hide, Fight”. It provides explicit instruction on what to do in the case of an intruder scenario including how to barricade a room. Campus Supervisors have been trained on advanced active shooter procedures. Administration train their staffs who in turn train the students on the basis of Run, Hide, Fight:


• Have an escape route and plan in mind
• Leave your belongings behind
• Keep your hands visible


• Hide in an area out of the shooter’s view
• Block/Barricade entry to your hiding place and lock the doors
• Silence your cell phone and/or pager


• As a last resort and only when your life is in imminent danger
• Attempt to incapacitate the shooter
• Act with physical aggression and throw items at the active shooter

How can a visitor on campus be distinguished from a staff member?

All visitors on campus must have an ID badge. District Staff must wear their ID, all other visitors/outsiders are provided with a visitor badge upon registration.

Can threats of school violence, bullying, vandalism, break-ins, or other concerns be reported anonymously?

RUSD has an account with “We-Tip” to report any concern anonymously to protect students. The WeTip hotline number is (800) 78-CRIME (1-800-782-7463) or (855) 86-BULLY (1-855-862-8559). The links are on each school site webpage.

What is the District doing to enhance security at our schools?

A blueprint for safety and security has been created by the RUSD Safety Committee and will be presented to the Board of Education on April 17th, 2018. The blueprint for safety and security builds on what is already in place to ensure student safety and includes recommendations for near term enhancements and future upgrades.

How does the District support the social and emotional needs of students?

The District provides professional support to RUSD students and staff experiencing trauma (divorce, death in the family, bullying, depression, etc.) and teaching students social skills. RUSD has the following programs designed to support student wellness:

• Student Assistance Program (SAP) – Counseling
• School Counselors (Middle & High School)
• School Psychologists
• Crisis Response Team (school psychologists and SAP counselors)

How does the District or the school communicate to parents and community about threats, lockdowns, or intruders that might occur on my child’s campus or within the District?

The District utilizes a variety of methods to communicate to parents and community. They include auto-dialer phone calls to parents and staff, text messages for those who have opted into this feature, FaceBook, Instagram, and Twitter.

What do I do if my child’s school is in lockdown?

The procedures for dealing with major disasters and intruders on campus, including lockdown, evacuation, and reunification of students with their parents/guardians are included in the school site security and disaster preparedness plans. In a lockdown/evacuation situation, the priority will always be to ensure student safety. This means that students will not be released to parents/guardians until police, fire, or district administration determines that the situation leading to a lockdown/evacuation is clear and it is safe to reunify students with their parents.
In such situations, parents will not be permitted entrance into the affected school or access to their children and may be directed to a location away from the school until authorities determine that it is safe to release the students. As it is safe to do so, district and/or law enforcement officials will provide parents and the community with information updates as they are available. It is important that parents and community follow the directions of school and law enforcement authorities in emergency situations to help ensure the safety of all students and staff.

What do I do if my child’s school has been evacuated?

If it is determined that students need to be evacuated from a school for safety reasons, the students will be transported to an evacuation location. In some cases this location will be pre-determined in the site’s safety plan, in other situations, the location may be determined in collaboration with law enforcement based on safety needs.
Again, in such situations, parents will not be permitted entrance into the affected school or access to their children until it is safe to do so and all students are accounted for. Parents may be directed to a location away from the school until authorities determine that it is safe to release the students. As it is safe to do so, District and/or law enforcement officials will provide parents and the community with information updates as they are available. It is important that parents and community follow the directions of school and law enforcement authorities in emergency situations to help ensure the safety of all students and staff.

Where do I pick up my child if the school has been evacuated?

After the emergency event has been cleared, the District will notify parents through phone calls, social media, and texts of the re-unification location where to pick-up their children. This may be the same location as the evacuation location or students may be transported to a special re-unification location.

Does the District employ any safety personnel?

RUSD has the following safety personnel at school sites:

• Site Administrators;
• 16 Campus Supervisors at Elementary School sites with no Assistant Principal;
• 3 Campus Supervisors at each Middle School sites, STEM & EOC;
• 7 Campus Supervisors at High School sites; and
• 5 School Resource Officers assigned by the Riverside Police Department to each comprehensive High School sites and their feeder schools.
Additional personnel are dispatched by the District office from other sites as needed in emergency situations.

What are the differences between Lockdown vs. Lockout?

Included in all Comprehensive Site Security Plans (CSSP) for each site. Lockdown/Shelter in Place (Crisis-hard) is initiated if there is an immediate threat to students and staff, on or adjacent to campus. This may include multiple individuals fighting, intruder, brandished or evidence of concealed weapons and suspicious explosive device.

In Lockdown, students and staff move indoors, lock doors, secure gates, no circulation of staff or students in halls or on campus, remain quiet, no instruction, turn off light and no entrance by visitors. Intruder/Active Shooter procedures are activated.

Lockout (Precautionary-soft) is called when there is no immediate threat to students and staff. This may include law enforcement activity in the community, suspicious device at a distance from the school, natural gas odor or bee swarm/animals on campus.

For a Lockout students and staff move indoors, lock doors, secure gates, limited circulation may be possible with adult escort, instruction may take place and no entrance by visitors.

What are the levels of emergency response?

Included in all Comprehensive Site Security Plans (CSSP) for each site and the District Safety Plan are descriptions of three levels of response to emergency situations. First Level Response may include, but not limited to student demonstrations, large fights or confrontation, sit down strikes, adult or student interference, walkouts, personal assault, property damage, non-violent intruders and police activity in the school community deemed dangerous to students and staff. First level Responses are controlled with school resources such as administrators, campus supervisors, and SRO’s.

Second Level Response is declared by school principal or designee when a current or projected situation cannot be controlled or contained with available school resources. Typically this includes initiating lockout procedures for events such as a neighborhood break-in, fire, or chase situation in the vicinity of the school.

Third level Response is declared when a situation may require assistance beyond the schools staff and districts response team. Third Level Response results in a lockdown and activation of Intruder/Active Shooter procedures. This level requires support by law enforcement and fire department resources. This level occurs when the school, students, and staff are determined to be in immediate danger.

Who can I contact with additional questions?

Specific questions about your safety and security at your child’s school should be directed to the school’s Principal and/or Assistant Principal. If you have general questions regarding District practices and plans you can call the District Child Welfare and Attendance Manager assigned to support your child’s school at 951-352-1200.