SEATTLE — Garfield High School in Seattle announced it will return to in-person learning on Monday after a shooting threat caused the school to move to remote learning.
Garfield principal Taranace Hart said in a note to parents and staff on Saturday that Garfield and Nove will resume in-person learning and after-school activities on Monday. Hart said the school moved to remote learning "out of an abundance of caution" on Friday after officials received a community tip about a potential threat of gun violence on the campus.
Seattle Public Schools (SPS) will have more security added outside of Garfield and Nova school buildings from June 5-9, along with support from the SPS Safety and Security team, Hart said in the note.
Hart said the Seattle Police Department will have a patrol emphasis in the area for more police presence.
There will be a meeting on Monday at 7 p.m. for Garfield students, families and staff regarding safety and security.
Garfield closed school early on Thursday due to “threats that appeared to be related to dismissal time and after school.”
Hart said the Seattle Police Department and Seattle Public Schools security were on campus and in the neighborhood during Thursday’s early dismissal and no incidents were seen or reported.
The “increase of violence” Hart mentioned in his Friday message comes after three separate shootings near Garfield High School, all in May alone.
On May 18, Seattle police responded to a shooting outside the Teen Life Center that injured a 19-year-old.
On May 24, Seattle police discovered several shell casings and a car with bullet holes two blocks away from the Garfield campus. Seattle police reported a teen, later identified as a 16-year-old, was dropped off at a nearby hospital in stable condition with a gunshot wound.
On May 26, a Seattle police officer working at the Teen Life Center reported hearing gunfire in the area. Responding officers reportedly found a man outside the center with multiple gunshot wounds. He was transported to the hospital with life-threatening injuries.
All of the shootings are still being investigated.
Shootings in the Central District have gone up substantially since 2021. Seattle Police Department data only goes through April, but shows there were two shootings in 2021. So far this year, there have been 11.
A student at Garfield sent KING 5 a message saying she is glad the school district took action and is disappointed in how Seattle is handling gun violence. They ended the message by saying, "I no longer feel safe at my school."
"It's a shame because, at their age, they should only be concerned about going to school, getting their work done and graduating high school," said Jaawell Faggins.