At Charlottesville City Schools, we use an evidenced-based system to evaluate threats to school safety. Developed by Dr. Dewey Cornell and others at the Curry School of Education at U.Va., the Virginia Student Threat Assessment Guidelines are used by schools across the country. The training equips school staff to evaluate threats of violence made by students, whether towards self or others.
Each Charlottesville school has a threat assessment team that can draw upon the resources of school administrators, counselors, psychologists, social workers, and/or school resource officers.
Using the guidelines of the program, the team reviews the specific situation and evaluates the remarks as transient (quickly resolved) or substantive (indicating serious intent to harm). In either case, action is taken and families are notified.