Vancouver Public Schools’ principals and administrators are investigating a disturbance at an all-district eighth-grade basketball tournament that resulted in nine students being arrested. The incident happened on Friday night at Gaiser Middle School and involved students from several district schools.

The disturbance began when a student was asked to leave the school gym because he was threatening another student. Other students then became involved in the conflict. They disrupted the tournament and refused to follow the direction of district staff and law enforcement personnel.

The students who were arrested were emergency expelled over the weekend. They are from multiple schools and are not allowed on any school campus. Privacy laws prevent us from sharing more specific details about those students. However, we will hold all the involved students accountable for their behavior, and we will respond with appropriate disciplinary actions.

We want to assure you that we are taking additional measures, including dispatching extra district resource officers to schools, to ensure the safety of our students in all of our schools. Providing safe and supportive schools is a top priority. We continue to work hard every day to maintain a respectful and nurturing environment, and we ask parents to be partners in this ongoing effort.