Handbook Detail Page

Safety Guidelines

School Safety: Tacoma Public Schools provides high schools (Foss, Lincoln, Mount Tahoma, Oakland, Stadium and Wilson) and middle schools with campus security officers. In addition, school patrol officers are assigned to support high schools and their feeder schools. In partnership with the Tacoma Police Department, Tacoma Public Schools provides school resource officers at the high school level. Criminal activity at all levels of schools will be reported to law enforcement. Unauthorized persons are not allowed on school property, and students are not allowed to leave school without permission. All volunteers and school staff must complete criminal background checks. For more information, contact the district’s Security Department at 253-571-1255 or visit tacoma.k12.wa.us/information/departments/safety-security.

Closed campuses: Students in PreK through grade 12 must have the school’s permission to leave the school grounds during regular school hours.

Emergencies: In case of an earthquake, volcanic eruption, major power failure or fire, elementary students and students with disabilities will not be sent home until staff knows there is someone at home to supervise them or that other care has been arranged. Please make arrangements for alternative care in advance if you may not be available, and provide this information to the school. If it is necessary to close a school during the day and send students home, local media will be alerted and district social media and telephone messaging will be used to communicate with parents/guardians. Please make sure your contact information is current with your students’ schools.

Visitors: To ensure student safety, per district policy and regulation, all visitors, including parents, must sign in or check in at school offices and wear a badge identifying themselves as a "visitor" or "volunteer." Visitors must follow the building rules. Violators may be excluded from school premises and activities for failure to follow building rules or for disruptive behavior.

Individual Student Safety: Parents and teachers are important partners in teaching students personal safety. To help keep your student safe on the way to and from school urge them to:

  • Obey crossing guards assigned to help at some of the city’s busiest streets. As it is not possible to have a guard at each crossing, teach your student how to safely cross streets on his/her own.
  • Walk with a buddy.
  • Let you know where they are going and when they arrive.
  • Not get close to any car that slows down or stops near them.
  • Use the same route and do not take shortcuts.
  • Know the emergency phone numbers for the family.

If you drive your student to school, pay close attention to the instructions your school provides for student drop-off and pick-up. These instructions are meant to protect your student’s and others’ safety and allow for smooth traffic flow. Please do not stop in no parking zones, bus zones or school crossings. 

If your student rides a bike to school, please teach your student the rules of the road and bicycle safety and responsibility. Schools are not responsible for lost, stolen or damaged bikes or another student's personal property. 

Violence Prevention Hotline: 1-866-LIVE-TIP, EXT. 1155

Page last updated: 06/30/18

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