Woodside Elementary middle school students walking to, from and around Roberts Market in Woodside have been approached by strangers in cars, either trying to talk to them or offer them rides, according to a Jan. 27 advisory sent to parents of students at the school.
The Sheriff's Office has been notified and has said it will "saturate" the area with patrol cars after school, the advisory says. The market is at the corner of Woodside and Mountain Home roads, a few minutes walk from the Woodside Elementary School. Many students go there after school.
Superintendent Beth Polito said that the incident was "unwanted attention" and although nothing serious happened it was enough that it was "worrisome behavior."
Parents are advised to tell students to walk in groups, and, if approached by a stranger to immediately go to where other people are or inside a business and then call the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office non-emergency number at (650) 363-4911. Students waiting for a ride after school or events are advised to wait near buildings, not in the parking lot.
The school says it plans to meet with fifth- to eighth-grade students to talk about safety and the recent events, and with younger students about "stranger danger" in general, the message said.