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Update for WCPS Families Regarding School Safety

Posted April 6, 2023

*Shared with families on April 5, 2023*

To our WCPS learning community:

I would like to take the opportunity to share a message with all of our school families about a very serious incident that happened on one of our school buses today. While this happened at one school, I want to share this experience with everyone in our learning community. I want you to have accurate information, and I want to do all that we can to prevent this from happening again.

A second-grade student from Rockland Woods Elementary showed a handgun to other students on the school bus. He was carrying it in his bookbag. The gun was not loaded, and the student did not have any ammunition. I am thankful to the students who reported this to the bus driver, and I appreciate the bus driver’s quick and calm action in the interest of student safety and well-being. WCPS is cooperating with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office while they investigate this matter. While we are incredibly fortunate that no one was harmed today, it is very disturbing to know that a student had a weapon in one of our schools.  

I feel it is my responsibility to share three key takeaways with our school families. We all must work together to keep our schools and our children safe.

  1. Please talk to your children about the danger involved in bringing inappropriate items to school. There are significant ramifications to these decisions.
  2. If you see something, say something. Parents, school staff, community members - please quickly report any potential danger to law enforcement or a school administrator. Please assure your children they are making a good decision by speaking up when it comes to safety.
  3. It is the law in Maryland to keep your weapons locked and secured at all times so they don’t get into the hands of children. I can’t stress this enough.

For your information, I have included a letter that was shared with Rockland Woods families in the "Documents" section of this webpage.

There are serious consequences for both children and families in these circumstances. WCPS wants only the best for our children and for our community. Thank you for your partnership in keeping our schools safe and secure.


Dr. David T. Sovine, Superintendent