District parents set to rally for safety at Board of Education meeting

District parents rallying for safety at Board of Education meeting
DeJean Middle School

Parents of West Contra Costa Unified School District (WCCUSD) students who are concerned about safety at schools are planning to rally at the Board of Education meeting set for Wed., June 15 from 6:30-10 p.m. at Lovonya DeJean Middle School in Richmond, per a parent post Tuesday on Mira Vista School’s Facebook page. The same communication indicated other district schools would be joining the effort.

Concerns have arisen in the wake of a number of on-campus incidents at WCCUSD schools involving guns.

At Mira Vista School in Richmond, which encompasses an elementary and middle school, the principal and parent community are at odds about how to handle safety issues on campus, following an incident in late March when an older student threatened gun violence against multiple students, according to a June 6 parent communication on the school’s Facebook page.

Tuesday’s social media post announcing the rally stated that “across the district, schools are seeing an alarming increase in gun threats and violence on campuses,” and noted that the meeting is a “good opportunity to coalesce with other school communities to ask the district to provide clearer policies around gun threats and serious acts of violence occurring on school campuses and to ask for transparency on the process for investigating and resolving these incidents.”

Plans for the rally come on the heels of the WCCUSD hosting multiple community forums surrounding safety issues and how the district plans to address them in the short and long terms.

The district responded to plans for the rally with this statement to the Standard: “The West Contra Costa Unified School District welcomes and encourages community input. Safety is a key area of focus for us: in the recent months, we have worked on enhancing site-specific safety plans that were developed prior to the school year, school leaders and held community forums in April and May to hear feedback and ideas from the community. School safety also requires a broad-based effort by the entire community, and we look forward to working with all of our stakeholders to ensure all of our campuses are safe so students can learn and thrive.”