In light of the horrible events in Newtown, Connecticut, we send our thoughts and prayers to the families affected by this tragedy, and know you join us in these sentiments as well.
Situations like these give us cause to reflect on what we do in our own schools to ensure the well-being of those we are charged to safeguard. In that spirit we want to reassure you that the safety of our children is paramount. The school district has a comprehensive safety plan for each building that is reviewed throughout the year and shared with law enforcement and our fire departments. All of our buildings are locked and once school is in session, entrance can only be gained through one entrance that is monitored throughout the day.
Administrators and staff practice exercises to ensure their preparedness for emergency situations, knowing full well that preparation is the key to managing emergencies effectively. While we are confident that we are taking the proper steps to keep our children safe, we will always look for ways to refine and improve our procedures.
A document has been posted on our website that you may find helpful in discussing this tragedy with your children. It is vital that you reassure them that our schools are safe and secure. Our administrators and mental health professionals are always available as a resource should your children show any signs of distress. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions or concerns.
I know that you are spending this weekend in good conversations and tight hugs with your children. We will get through this together.
Dr. Lorna R. Lewis,
Superintendent, Plainview-Old Bethpage Central School District