WAIANAE (HawaiiNewsNow) – Administrators at Leihoku Elementary School in Waianae have sent two letters to parents this week cautioning them about two separate incidents in which strangers approached students. Both incidents happened this week between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. One of the incidents happened on campus, the other off campus as the student was walking home.
"In both situations just unusual questions were asked by strangers, for example, is your mother going to pick you up from school," Leihoku Elementary Principal Randy Miura told Hawaii News Now.
The first incident happened Monday when a tall woman with fair skin and light red hair approached a student. The second happened Tuesday when an unidentified man approached a student. In each case the student reported the incident to an adult at the school.
"We've notified all of our parents through letters and we've also gone to all of our classes to remind students of safe practices both at home and in school and we've also beefed up our security in and around campus as well," Miura said.
The letters contain advice for kids such as, "Never get into a vehicle with strangers," And "Do not walk or wait alone, but walk or wait in groups."
The beefed up security includes Honolulu police who are now making frequent trips onto and around campus.
"It's nice to see them out. I've seen the school reaction coming out ... all the adult supervisors coming out. You know, it's good to see them around now," said Roberta Naweli, who was at Leihoku Thursday to pick up her grandchildren.
"I was really concerned that a child was stopped by a female and asked questions. That really raised my suspicion. You know, I tell my grandchildren never stop to talk to anyone they don't know," added Kalona Johnson, who was also picking up her grandchildren.
Administrators are asking parents and grandparents to pick up their kids as soon as possible after school. It is advice Landon Viliamu and other parents are taking seriously.
"Their safety is my number one concern, for me and their mother. So we're glad that someone is always watching out for them," Viliamu said.
"At Leihoku Elementary School there is nothing more important than ensuring that all of our students are healthy and safe both on and off the campus," Miura concluded.