Supts eNews - Oct. 3, 2023


In this edition ...

  • Safety month: How we protect students and staff
  • High Fives: Staff housing media mentions

Safety month: How we protect students and staff

Dear Parents,

Students have to be - and feel - safe in order to learn. Our District is responsible for the safety of 4,500 students and more than 600 staff members every day. The reality is there is a lot in the world that we can’t control, but we can do all that’s possible to prevent issues and be ready to act when dangerous situations arise.

safety picturesSafety in MVWSD is all encompassing. It means programs for prevention, such as bike safety, mental health, disaster training, and digital citizenship. It means physical improvements, such as improved lighting, ventilation and secure campus perimeters. It also means procedures that guide our actions in times of bad air quality, dangerous intruder, COVID, earthquake, fire, etc.

In the 2022-23 school year, our district undertook a holistic view of emergency practices at all of our schools. This culminated in on-site school safety audits by a security consultant at every location. We also collected data from surveys and interviews with parents, staff and middle school students. Our Safety Advisory Task Force, with parents and staff representatives, worked to funnel all of this data into safety priorities, both long- and short-term efforts, that formed my recommendations to our Board.

This fall, we will be busy implementing both new and improved safety practices. We are currently updating our overarching comprehensive school safety plan. This plan will inform and provide the framework for each of our schools’ safety plans. If you have suggestions or ideas, please contact members of your School Site Council. This group works closely with your principal to incorporate changes and suggestions into school plans.

Plans are only as good as the amount of practice that goes into them. We will hold staff and student trainings that are crucial for preparing us for potential crisis events. 

   * On October 19 we will hold an earthquake drill so students and staff members can practice strategies for evacuation, accounting for students, parent-student reunification, search and rescue techniques, first aid, and school operations without power, food or water. This date corresponds with the Great Shakeout, an international effort to bring awareness to earthquake safety. New this year: Our schools will hold additional, abbreviated earthquake drills in January and April.

   * In October, our elementary schools will review what to do in the event of a dangerous intruder or similar event on campus. The dates for each school’s practice will vary depending on scheduling. Practice means students will view an age-appropropriate video (like the “dangerous intruder” video for elementary students that you may preview here) and talk with their teacher. The video and classroom discussion will encourage children to stay calm, follow directions, and listen to trusted adults. Drills for middle school students are more specific and involve multiple agencies. Middle school practice will be done when we complete the upgrade of our door lock system. Your principal will give you more information closer to the time.

   * Our schools have already held fire drills to practice how to evacuate in the event of a fire or other emergencies, and how students are accounted for. Fire drills will continue throughout the year.

We approach our practices with sensitivity and age-appropriate activities. In these uncertain times, it is imperative that our students and staff members know what to do to keep themselves and others safe. While talking about and practicing for these events is uncomfortable, we believe that if students know what to do, they will feel more confident, and ultimately be better equipped to react with safety in mind.

We appreciate your support of these efforts. For videos and more details about safety, please see


Dr. Ayindé Rudolph, Ed.D.


High Fives: Staff housing mentions

staff housingSuperintendent Dr. Ayindé Rudolph recently spoke to the Washington Examiner about MVWSD's "how-to" Staff Housing Roadmap for other districts and the benefits this new facility will bring to our staff and community. Our staff housing was also featured by the League of Innovative Schools on the Digital Promise blog. We are grateful to our community for supporting staff housing through Measure T. We'll keep you up to date on milestones as this project progresses.

Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2024 SchoolMessenger Corporation. All rights reserved.