• Threat Identification and Assessment

    Threat Identification

    Threats received by the Charleston County School District are thoroughly investigated 24 hours per day.  Students and families are encouraged to report any information that could impact a school directly to a teacher, administrator, school staff member, SRO, or other trusted adult in the school.  Threats can also be reported in one of the following ways:

    • Contact the Charleston County Consolidated Dispatch Center at (843) 743-7200, especially if information about a threat is discovered after hours.  Local law enforcement will contact the CCSD Security and Emergency Management team 24/7, as needed, to assist in the investigation of a threat.  In case of an emergency, dial 911 immediately.
    • Contact the CCSD SpeakUp Hotline at (877) 250-2790.
    • CCSD students can email a tip from their CCSD email account to speakup@charleston.k12.sc.us.
    • Contact the 24/7 CCSD Security Operations Center at (843) 296-2166.

    Email should not be relied upon to communicate time-sensitive information.  Always report emergencies directly to law enforcement by calling 911.

    CCSD also utilizes a monitoring system that helps detect threatening messages that are transmitted via a CCSD student's district network account or device.

    Threat Assessment

    A formal threat assessment process based on the recommendations of the U.S. Secret Service and the S.C. Department of Education is utilized whenever a student makes a threat against a CCSD school or facility.  The ultimate goal of the assessment is to determine whether or not a student poses a threat and what interventions are necessary to prevent an act of violence from being carried out.  A multidisciplinary team, which includes members such as a Security and Emergency Management administrator, school mental health provider, school administrator, member of the Office of Exceptional Children, and/or law enforcement, aids in the assessment of threats.

    CCSD officials work 24/7 with law enforcement to:

    • Treat all threats seriously.
    • Investigate the incident promptly and efficiently.
    • Use support staff and external resources as a part of multidisciplinary threat assessment teams.
    • Take appropriate disciplinary and criminal enforcement steps.
    • Document the threats and actions taken.
    • Enhance security measures, as appropriate, to ensure the safety of all students, staff, and facilities.

    Some additional factors in the threat assessment and identification process include the following:

    • Every threat or appearance of a threat is assessed through multiple sources of information to determine if a threat is posed.  The goal of the assessment is to determine if a student is demonstrating behaviors on a pathway to violence.
    • Assessment also determines the level of intervention needed to keep all students safe.
    • Excluding a student from campus can be a stressor that can increase risk for harm.
    • Decisions related to student discipline are made based on facts.
    • Parents are critical partners in recognizing warning signs in their children.
    • Parents are also critical partners in monitoring their child's social media.  Concerns related to school safety should be reported directly to school officials and/or law enforcement.  Rumors perpetuated on social media can significantly hamper an investigation.
    • Federal student privacy laws often prevent schools from sharing key details related to the outcome of an investigation, such as any disciplinary action taken against a student.  Information that can be shared will be; however, understanding the thorough process used to assess threats can help students and parents feel more confident that these situations are thoroughly investigated.