VANCOUVER -- The Evergreen School District said it could have done a better job telling parents about a lockdown Wednesday after an 11-year-old boy allegedly brought a gun, more than 400 rounds of ammunition and several knives to a Vancouver middle school.
The school said it used its Facebook page to alert parents.
The middle school and nearby Pioneer Elementary School were put in lockdown while police investigated. The weapons were recovered and the suspect was charged with attempted murder.
Some parents have said the district should have been more forthcoming and quicker to inform them about the incident.
As far as response, we didn't get any, said parent Ed Novak. A little disturbing when we got home and found out my daughter was in lockdown for two hours. They've got some issues they need to work out.
I wish parents would get text messages with updates when their child's school is in a lockdown, said another parent on the district's Facebook page.
Other parents suggested the district's first concern should be keeping the children safe, not notifying parents. Nobody was injured in the incident.
The district does not have an emergency phone or text system, said Evergreen School District spokesman Kris Fay. He said the alert was also posted on the district's website, but the information was not readily apparent Thursday morning.
On Thursday afternoon, KGW again spoke with Fay who said the school would be looking into better ways to communicate with parents in the future.
The feedback we ve gotten over the last 24 hours, we re taking all to heart, and we understand the frustration. We ll definitely be looking at it to make sure we improve communications for any future incidents, he said.
While Frontier students were sent home with an explanatory letter, Pioneer students did not get a letter because they were on an early release schedule for the day, Fay said.
Early Thursday morning, there was nothing on the Frontier home page that pointed to a weapons incident. The district also has a Twitter account. But it was last used June 17.
If they think they made a mistake, maybe they can learn from their mistake and do it differently next time, parent Sean Travis said. But I just hope there isn't a next time.