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School board hears interrogation, child abuse and allergic reaction policies


Cheney School Board directors held the first readings of three policies at their Feb. 12 meeting dealing with on-campus student interrogations, child abuse and neglect prevention and anaphylaxis response.

School resource officer Sgt. Kelly Hembach explained board policy 3226 regarding “Interviews and Interrogations of Students on School Premises” comes at the recommendation of the Washington State School Directors Association (WSSDA) in response to new laws passed by the state. The policy references specific sections of the Revised Code of Washington as well as current district policies and will address “child abuse and neglect investigations, criminal investigations and health department investigations.

Hembach told the board the most substantial change to policy 3421, “Child Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation Prevention,” was the striking of language regarding investigative interviews and noting these procedures were now included in policy 3226. The rest of the two policies remain as before.

“There is no change to our district practice,” Hembach said.

Student Support Services Director Kristi Thurston told the board there were a couple of changes to policy 3420, “Anaphylaxis Prevention and Response.” The most significant of these is the district’s ability to now maintain a supply of epinephrine autoinjectors at designated school locations based on the number of students enrolled at that school.

If a student has an anaphylactic event and their autoinjector supply is not immediately available, the school nurse or designated trained school personnel may use the school’s epinephrine supply. Students’ parents or guardians must still provide the school with “appropriate medication and treatment orders” if that student has a life-threatening allergy, and the policy does not negate other emergency procedures.

“We always call 9-1-1, we always have a quick response,” Thurston said.

In other news, directors who attended the recent WSSDA legislative conference in Olympia said all school districts in the state were united in delivering a message to legislators meeting in session to fully fund education, maintain state matching funds for school construction and providing cost of living increases for staff. Attending the conference were directors Marcie Estrellado, Suzanne Dolle and Henry Browne along with student advisors Kinsey Pease and Kit Foster.

The board also received an update on the district’s counseling curriculum adoption implementation from Sunset Elementary School counselor Samantha Winchell, Cheney Middle School counselor Martha Meyers-Harris and high school counselor Lisa Prewitt.

John McCallum can be reached at

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