Cougar near Campus

September 28, 2016

Dear Parent and Guardians,

Today at Sam’s Valley Elementary, we took precautionary measures to ensure the safety of your student(s).  Late afternoon on Tuesday, September 27, a watchful neighbor reported seeing three cougars near school on private property.  At least one of the animals was reported to have killed livestock.  Authorities were notified and we worked closely with Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Upon hearing of the potential threat, we made the decision to limit recess to only indoor locations and our covered play area this morning until further notice from authorities.  As of 9:00am this morning, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife reported that all three cougars have been trapped.  They reminded us as well that cougars are common in our rural areas and offered the attached brochure.

I would like to commend our staff, students, concerned community members and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.  I do not feel that our students were ever in danger today, but all parties involved responded quickly and made sure every child was safe.  These procedures are part of a district-wide and state crisis readiness plan.  Students were not informed of a cougar sighting nor did they witness one.

Please talk to your students about the importance of following directions from adults during all emergency procedures and feel free to call me if you have any questions.

Christine Beck, Principal