In the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Newtown, CT. that killed 20 students and six adults last week, the St. Charles County Council is taking a closer look at local school safety.
The council passed an emergency ordinance Monday night, establishing a task force to study and make recommendations to improve safety procedures at local public, private schools and colleges
“We need to hear from the schools and law enforcement and everyone involved,” said County Executive Steve Ehlmann, in a news release. “If we talk about this, and everyone shares their ideas, I think it could lead to some new procedures. We’re not saying we’ll solve the problem. We’re just saying we need to talk about it.”
The St. Charles County ordinance establishing the task force states that “recent events have re-emphasized the importance of preparation, including ensuring that schools, the mental health community and law enforcement have training and procedures to enhance readiness for, and response to, threatening situations which may arise within St. Charles County . . .”
The task force will be made up of:
- 14 members appointed by the county executive, with the approval of the county council.
- At least five members will represent the schools and five will represent municipal and county law enforcement.
- One member shall represent the mental health treatment community and one member will come from the developmental disabilities service community.
- Two members will be from the St. Charles County Council.
The task force is set to submit preliminary findings by Feb. 1, 2013, and a final report by June 1, 2013.
According to Mid Rivers Newsmagazine, at Monday's meeting, Fort Zumwalt School District Assistant Superintendent Kim Carter said that the district takes several precautions, including practice safety drills, locking all doors and requiring visitors to sign in with identification.
Do you feel safe sending your child to school with the security measures in place? What do you think can be done to improve safety at local schools?
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