Santa Cruz County

Santa Cruz elementary school alerts parents to investigation

Police investigating incident at Westlake Elementary School

SANTA CRUZ - Officials at Westlake Elementary School in Santa Cruz have alerted parents to an investigation into inappropriate material found on a school computer.

In a letter sent to parents Thursday, principal Clyde Curley said that inappropriate material was discovered on a school computer in January. The computer was then turned over to the Santa Cruz Police Department, which is conducting an ongoing investigation.

Police asked school officials not to communicate about the matter until they had determined no students had been victimized or were immediately in harm's way. A teacher at the school has been placed on administrative leave in order "to ensure the integrity of the police investigation." That individual, who is not being identified, has not been arrested or charged. School officials stress that being placed on administrative leave is not disciplinary in nature.

Deputy Police Chief Steve Clark said he could not comment on the case because of the ongoing nature of the investigation.

Santa Cruz City School District Superintendent Gary Bloom said school officials turned to law enforcement within hours of the material's discovery, and it was quickly determined no students or local children were in danger. Bloom said the school didn't release information sooner because police had asked officials not to. However, once rumors began circulating and questions arose, school officials were given the green light to release limited information.

Letter to parents

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