Letter to the editor: Changes made at school to enhance student safety

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We know that everyone has been really concerned about school safety since the Newtown tragedy. Be assured that OCES is continuously thinking about our students’ safety. Owen County Elementary School practices emergency situations throughout the year.
When our SBDM committee last met, the committee agreed on the modification of a few procedures that stood out as concerns. Below, we have bulleted the changes or modifications that will be implemented as of Feb. 1.
As of Feb. 1:
• One of the most chaotic times of the day and most vulnerable for students is during dismissal. That being said, car riders and parent pick up changes have been implemented.
• Between 7:50 a.m. and 3:10 p.m. is instructional time. No one is permitted beyond the office vestibule unless otherwise invited by a teacher or principal. Items brought to school for students will be given to the secretaries and they will distribute them to where they need to go.
• Parents are welcome to bring lunches to students if desired. Food is to be dropped off at the front office and it will be delivered to the student. Parents will no longer be able to lunch with students during scheduled lunch times.
• Remember, anyone that is involved with kids via volunteers, field trip chaperones or mentors must have background checks to be in the building.
• Our sheriff’s department is now randomly walking through our schools for added security and giving suggestions for needed changes. The sheriff’s department has also been notified of these changes.
We understand that this may seem somewhat drastic, but remember it is your children that we are trying to keep safe, while at the same time provide a safe, nurturing learning environment. If you have questions please call us at (502) 484-3417.

Marlin Gregg
Principal, Owen County Elementary School