Superintendent Schlosser leads a meeting concerning school safety.
Members of the Marion County Public Schools leadership team along with local law officials and a representative from the Kentucky Center for School Safety met recently to review and discuss safety protocol in the district.
“It’s always important to continue to build positive relationships and reinforce safety concerns,” MCPS superintendent Taylora Schlosser said. “Certainly, given recent state and national events, we want everyone to know that school safety has been and continues to be high on our list of priorities [...] The meeting we had today was to ensure that we continue to build strong relationships with those involved in helping us maintain a safe school environment.”
Among new ideas, Schlosser said that on-duty police officers, sheriff's deputies, and state troopers will have an open invitation to receive a free school breakfast or lunch and receive access to the school’s Internet access as well as space to complete paperwork.
“We want to be on the same page as local law officials,” Schlosser said. “And we also want families in the community to know that when law enforcement officials are in our schools it’s not necessarily because of any type of incident. More often it’s because we invite them into our schools and because we want to maintain this positive partnership.”
Other safety measures the district has implemented include providing all members of the Lebanon Police Department and the Marion County Sheriff’s Department with key fobs so that they will have full access to all school buildings. Also, the Lebanon Police Department Dispatch now has access to MCPS building video cameras from a central offsite location, allowing them to view live video.
Although a date has not been set, Schlosser said that she plans to schedule a district-wide training session that addresses extreme school safety incidents. Additionally, School Resource Officer Mark Roney is scheduled to attend ALICE (Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate) training March 6-7.
The protocol for visitors entering a school building will also undergo changes. Visitors will be asked a series of questions by front office staff before being admitted into the building.
“This might be slightly more time-consuming, but I feel it’s an important additional precaution,” Schlosser said.
During the meeting, the group also reviewed basic safety protocols such as performing school safety drills, keeping doors locked and monitored, and making sure administrators maintain access to radios for communication.
On hand for the meeting was Kentucky Center for School Safety (KCSS) Training Coordinator Dan Orman. The KCSS provides resources, trainings, and safety audits for schools across the state.
“They [KCSS] have been an incredible resource,” Schlosser said. “They’ve been able to give us some guidance and I look forward to working with them in the future.”