March 15th update
Recently, the Stockbridge Community News published an article by the Stockbridge Chief of Police, Johnnie Torres, Jr., about threats of school violence. In the article Chief Torres mentioned that the true intent of a person making a threat of school violence does not matter when it comes to the law. He cited the law, outlining some very serious consequences for a person found guilty. He also implored students, parents, and community members to not remain silent if they hear threats and to use systems available for reporting. One example is the OK2Say method of submitting a tip. This link is currently on the district home page of the Bath Community Schools website.
The Bath Township Police Department, in my conversations with them, share the same concerns noted above. They are a constant source of support and assistance to our school district. On Monday, February 26th, Chief Lindemulder, Officer Avery and I addressed the students at the middle school about the seriousness of these types of threats, along with the importance of reporting safety concerns. On March 12th, Mrs. Roedel and Officer Avery addressed the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students regarding the same topics.
Student Safety is of primary importance at Bath Community Schools and we are continually reviewing/analyzing safety procedures and implementing changes to our process to ensure the protection of students and staff. In addition to the middle school threat in February, we received a threat at the elementary school last week. Every time, threats receive our full resources and prompt action. We also learn from these experiences and adjust our plans accordingly.
Our three schools have a Building Emergency Response Team (BERT) set up to review procedures, make recommendations and train staff for emergencies. Discussions with our Board of Education members include bringing in of an outside agency to review our current program in the coming year. We will continue to work diligently to keep our students and staff safe.
Yours in School Safety,
Jake Huffman (firstname.lastname@example.org)