Educators and Law Enforcement Review School Safety
After one of the worst mass shootings in U.S. history at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Conn., the Board of Education in Mitchell County is examining the security in place at the schools and authorities are doing the same at other county buildings as well. Officials conducted walk-throughs of schools on Monday doing security evaluations with principals and meeting with school staff while reviewing lockdown procedures. Likewise the Mitchell County Sheriff’s Department is continuing its emergency response training for just such an incident. The Department’s special response team routinely tours county schools preparing their response in case someone makes their way inside a school intending to do harm. The Department also plans to have a bigger presence at the schools in the future. Mitchell School Superintendent Dr. Rick Spurling said that the school system works well with the Sheriff’s Department and that all schools in the county are well versed in evacuation and intruder in the building scenarios but warned that school officials need to keep their guards up.
Yancey County School officials, county commissioners and local law enforcement met over the weekend to make sure that plans were in place to insure the safety of the systems students in wake of the massacre. School Superintendent Dr. Tony Tipton advised administrators at each school to do everything possible to keep their schools safe and to make sure that they were prepared to take questions students might have about the horrible tragedy that took place. Tipton assured the public that the school system has a detailed safety plan in place and that all staff members know what to do in emergencies and that the Sheriff’s Department has protocol in place to deal with such situations. Deputies patrol the counties schools on a regular basis but are making an extra effort this week to make several stops at each school in the mornings and afternoons to let the students know that they are being protected.