A Baltimore school staff member was injured Monday during an altercation with a woman who pulled out a knife when she was informed she couldn't visit a student, according to city school officials.
The school system lauded the rapid actions of school employees who stopped the unsupervised visitor, at a time when school systems across the country are being especially vigilant after a mass shooting at a Connecticut school Friday in which 20 children and six school employees were killed.
Baltimore school officials said the woman was buzzed into National Academy Foundation Preparatory School to drop off birthday cake and balloons to her relative, but said in a statement that she proceeded into the building without checking in at the front office.
Officials said she was promptly intercepted by a school staff member, and an altercation ensued. The visitor pulled a knife, injuring herself and the staff member. She was treated at the scene, and the staff member was treated at a nearby hospital, the statement said.
City schools CEO Andrés Alonso shared a letter Monday he sent to principals, which said the Newtown, Conn., shooting served as a "poignant reminder ... that we must remain ever vigilant to keep our children safe."
The system deployed support teams Monday to schools to help students, families or staff who may be grappling with the tragedy, school officials said.
Officials also said that school police would have an increased presence in schools this week, and school supervisors would review their emergency safety plans.