In addition to the excitement of the first day of school today, September 4, a concerned citizen reported they saw a cougar early this morning (around 6:30 a.m.) in Fall City. Fall City Elementary School received a call a little after 9 a.m. so, as a precaution, they implemented a modified lockdown (keeping students inside) until they could learn more. Nearby Chief Kanim Middle School was also notified.
We’ve since learned that the sighting was in a tree in the vicinity of 43rd and 336th and the Fire Department searched the area but did not find anything. The Department of Fish & Wildlife was also contacted. The wildlife officer has shared his confidence with the school district that the cougar is likely “long gone,” and suggested our schools function normally. Therefore, FCES is no longer exercising “shelter in place.”
Staff at both schools will continue to supervise students today during passing times outside as well as during PE and recess, simply as a precaution.
Because our area is also home to a variety of wildlife, we urge families to always exercise awareness and discretion. Anyone who sees or encounters a cougar or bear is asked to report it to the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife at 1-425-775-1311. If it is an emergency, call 911.