His office issued this press release on it. He says that he wants public input, but he wants any ideas to be given to principals, not to the task force.
It doesn’t appear the any of the task force’s meetings will be public. I hope that there will be some communication with the public. Parents need to know that their children are safe.
Recent school tragedies have created a renewed focus regarding the security and safety of children. As the nation still mourns lost lives in Connecticut, the Escambia school district begins a thoughtful and methodical approach to seek security improvement opportunities that will deter such a tragedy in our community.
The School District of Escambia County is presently working with the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office as well as the Pensacola City Police Department to increase law enforcement presence at schools.
“Our number one priority is for students to be safe while at school. While we will continue to focus on our recent progress, this is the time to reevaluate our security protocols and make improvements,” remarked Superintendent Malcolm Thomas.
Superintendent Thomas has established a Campus Security Task Force designed to focus on school safety and review security strategies. The Superintendent has designated the Assistant Superintendent of Operations to facilitate the Task Force.
The composition of the Task Force includes a wide variety of experts including an architect, a member of the Sales Tax Watchdog Committee, a parent, a principal, a teacher, a School Board member, the Sheriff’s Office, the Pensacola Police Department, and a variety of security experts.
The Campus Security Task Force will work to:
- Develop a comprehensive security and vulnerability assessment tool
- Complete a vulnerability assessment and prioritization of all schools
- Create recommendations to address identified priorities
- Review and recommend improvement for school response protocols
- Explore the feasibility of a school marshal program and other strategies to expand law enforcement on school campuses
If you have specific suggestions for improving security on a school campus, please provide the information directly to your school principal. Each principal will be a part of the evaluation process for their school.