Charlotte schools release plan outlining improved school safety measures

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Credit: WINK News

The Charlotte County School District sent a release to parents Thursday on what they plan to do to keep children safe on campuses.

The message comes in the wake of the Parkland school shooting. Partnering with the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office and Punta Gorda Police Department, the county has established extensive school safety procedures, which are listed below.

  • Updating school safety plans each year
  • Staffing every one of our elementary, middle and high schools with a School Resource Officer
  • Holding emergency drills, including lockdowns and evacuations
  • Training staff and students on how to respond in emergency situations
  • Requiring mandatory ID badges for staff
  • Limiting school access to one point-of-entry during school hours
  • Utilizing a buzzer system which provides school office staff some time to verify a visitor’s identity before allowing entrance into the main part of the campus
  • Monitoring school hallways with security cameras
  • Staffing our high schools with at least one security specialist
  • Joint training with the command staff of both the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office and the Punta Gorda Police Department
  • Analyzing thorough assessments of the “hard scape” of school buildings to improve and enforce school safety

Actions families can take

  • Discuss school safety with your children while acknowledging the issue that is gripping our nation
  • Stay connected and monitor your student’s social media activities
  • Follow the law and lock any firearms in an approved storage component or locker
  • Ensure your children do not have access to firearms while visiting other homes

The county also included this message:

“The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office and the Punta Gorda Police Department believe the best avenue to keep our students as safe as possible in school is not to arm teachers but rather to staff the schools with the needed additional School Resource Officers and mental health professionals. Charlotte County Schools will not be arming their teachers.”

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