Threat Assessment and Management for Educators and Administrators

6.0 A Case Study of How TAM Works in a School

Let’s examine how threat assessment might work in a school. The chart below follows the progression of a threat from its discovery through the threat assessment investigation process to its disposition. The first column describes the specific events of the scenario. The second column describes the activities undertaken by the threat assessment team in each stage as they identify an individual of concern, assess the appropriate level of concern, and develop a plan for managing the individual. The third column provides a bit more detail about the work in which the team is engaged.

While logistics and specifics may vary based on the school, the nature of the threat, or the individual of concern, in general the following process occurs:

The threat inquiry or investigation process described in the table above is outlined in the graphics below. The threat inquiry flow chart below provides a summary of the basic questions that need to answered by the threat assessment team as part of their inquiry and investigation.

The University of Virginia’s Decision Tree below provides a more detailed graphic of the threat assessment process.

The Educator’s School Safety Network has published a tip sheet providing assistance in designing appropriate supports and interventions.

Tip Sheet for Intervention and Support

Fein, Vossekuil, and Holden provide a summary of the threat assessment process from a law enforcement perspective in the National Institute of Justice’s Research in Action.

An Approach to Prevent Targeted Violence