A Message from the Superintendent & Sheriff regarding School Safety & Security
February 21, 2018
Dear Parents/Guardians and Community Members,
The tragic acts of violence in Parkland, Florida and recent social media threats locally have created understandable concern from parents, students, staff and community members about school safety. Many have contacted school and division level staff, school board members, and the sheriff’s office to better understand how we currently maintain and enhance the safety of our students and staff.
As safety and security in our schools is paramount, we would like to highlight some of the resources, structures, and procedures that are a part of comprehensive safety planning. SCPS incorporates a variety of measures, training, and awareness procedures as part of our overall school safety and security plans. These safety procedures include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Each school maintains and enacts a current School Crisis, Emergency Management and Medical Emergency Response Plan
- This plan provides guidelines for crisis response and prevention to a variety of situations
- The plan is updated annually
- Close partnership and coordination with the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office
- Full-Time School Resource Officers (SRO’s) are currently assigned to each secondary school (middle and high) and three elementary schools
- On-going SRO support as needed or requested for schools and sites
- Routine collaboration with the Sheriff’s Office and SRO’s on training and safety procedures
- Support for and implementation of Threat Assessment Procedures
- A safety committee comprised of school representatives and Sheriff’s Office deputies meets regularly throughout the year to review our crisis safety plans and discuss ways to enhance safety
- Students and staff participate in school-wide safety drills throughout the year including Lockdown drills and evacuation procedures
- Raptor Visitor Software utilized at check-in that scans the Driver’s Licenses/IDs of all visitors
- All buildings are equipped with surveillance and security cameras
- Structural enhancements have been made and continue to be made to school-building entrances to enhance entrance security and limit building access
- School counselors, school social workers, and other mental health professionals are in place to support students
It is important to note that specific details of the School Crisis, Emergency Management and Medical Emergency Response Plans are not shared with the general public for security reasons. However, an overview of the plan for each school is posted on the school’s website, under the Parent’s tab – Crisis Response Plan.
SCPS is deeply committed to providing a safe environment for every child and adult. Your support and partnership is also a critical component of school safety. We encourage you to talk to your child about the importance of sharing information about concerns to a teacher or school administrator, no matter how trivial the information may seem to you. When you or your child see something on social media that may pose a potential threat to school safety, please report this activity immediately to the authorities or the school administrator so that it can quickly be addressed. By working together, we can help ensure that our schools are a safe learning environment.
Thank you for your continued support.
S. Scott Baker Roger Harris
Superintendent Spotsylvania County Sheriff