Seattle schools, police preparing for Ferguson grand Jury decision

KING COUNTY -- Seattle schools and police readied for the announcement of the grand jury decision in Ferguson, preparing for any possible local protests or unrest that may come down as a result.

Seattle Public Schools administrators sent out a message to all principals, aimed at helping them prepare for advise their students regarding the Ferguson grand jury verdict. The note outlines how students are to best stay safe during possible protests, perhaps even involving students themselves.

Principals are encouraged to allow students to "recognize and value their emotions," but are reminded that while demonstrating is every student's right, creating a disturbance is not. Students who plan to "walk out" following the decision are allowed to do so.

A checklist of "tips for teaching controversial issues" and how to best facilitate a safe, positive environment in the face of announcements that some students may find upsetting were included in the release to principals.

"This may be difficult for students to deal with and what matters most is they know that you care," the release to Seattle Public Schools read. "You're helping them to be heard, and you want to keep them safe while safeguarding their futures."

Seattle police, on the other hand, prepared for general protests in the wake of the announcement.

According to police, Seattle's emergency operations center will be activated in the 100 block of 5th Avenue South. Capt. Chris Fowler has been designated to be the incident commander, the Seattle Times reported, and the city plans to host a rapid response event to help community members process the decision.

At least one rally is planned at Westlake Park and Seattle Central Community College following the announcement.

Both Garfield Community Center and Van Asselt Community Center are expected to open as well.