082519 sheriff's column

Posted 8/30/19

Back to school security

Our Bradley County Schools are back in session and the start of a new school year has begun. I am proud of the dedication and hard work our School Resources Officers put into the job they do to protect our schools.

This school year we took considerable steps to increase the security and prevention abilities at our high schools. Over the summer, I developed and have now implemented a plan to include an additional POST Certified deputy in each of our high schools. This now means there are two full-time, fully certified SROs in each high school.

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082519 sheriff's column

Posted

Back to school security
Our Bradley County Schools are back in session and the start of a new school year has begun. I am proud of the dedication and hard work our School Resources Officers put into the job they do to protect our schools.
This school year we took considerable steps to increase the security and prevention abilities at our high schools. Over the summer, I developed and have now implemented a plan to include an additional POST Certified deputy in each of our high schools. This now means there are two full-time, fully certified SROs in each high school.

This was not done in response to any specific threat, but as an attempt to further prevent anything serious happening in our high schools. The unfortunate reality of a school incident is the threat almost always originates from inside the school. By placing an additional officer inside the school, we double the protection we are able to provide for our students, teachers, and administrators.

I am pleased we were able to find the money within our current budget to make these two additional positions possible. I am even more pleased we were able to do this without any additional cost to taxpayers.

We will continue to have someone at each of the guard gates at the entrance to our high schools. These are important positions and a valuable part of our safety plan at these schools. We will use full trained individuals with former law enforcement experience. These individuals will work with us during the school year to cover these critical positions.
• Our School Threat Assessment Team has also met since the beginning of school. This team began meeting almost a year ago, and consists of law enforcement representatives, school security representatives, school administrators, mental health professionals, and members of the District Attorney’s Office.
This team is charged with addressing concerns inside the school system as they are reported. These concerns may come from teachers, administrators, students or parents.
• When a concern is reported it is investigated thoroughly and presented to this group to their expertise and direction in how best to handle it.
In their first meeting of the school year this team discussed items pertaining to the prior school year, as well as how to address concerns heading into the current year. This team will continue to work diligently to address concerns brought to them with dignity and a critical eye for safety and the law.
• As we do in each area of the Bradley County Sheriff’s Department we took the summer to look at how we can get better in the area of school safety. Heaven forbid we ever have an incident in one of our Bradley County Schools. But as a parent, as a grandparent, and as your sheriff, I am comforted to know that we are making improvements to keep our most precious assets safe while they are at school.

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