By NEESEY PAYNE
It’s read in headlines, seen on television and heard on the radio every day – the news of hundreds and thousands of innocent people being killed. When the news hits close to home, one is too many – especially when it’s the life of a child who has yet to experience what it’s like to turn 16, have a first car, or fall in love.
Pulaski County Public Schools is being proactive in taking the necessary precautions to ensure students, faculty and staff are safe and secure while at school with the expansion of its Central Emergency Planning Team.
The multi-agency task force is a partnership between Pulaski County, Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department, law enforcement officials from the town of Pulaski, town of Dublin, and Virginia State Police, emergency services, fire and rescue, public health officials and New River Valley Community Services.
Under the Readiness and Emergency Management in Schools grant, the task force will continue the school system’s all hazards emergency/crisis planning and training.
Pulaski County Sheriff Jim Davis recently met with Dr. Thomas Brewster, superintendent of schools, and staff. Brewster said they discussed “emergency plans and procedures, and the coordination of efforts that would take place during a crisis.” Brewster added they also collaborated on efforts that can be carried out in the future to “ensure the safety and security of our schools.”
The Central Emergency Planning Team will evaluate the schools’ facilities to ensure proper safety and security measures are in place, as well as provide recommendations to the school board and board of supervisors concerning the safety and security of schools.
During a recent interview, Brewster stated, “A safe and secure environment should be a guarantee for all students.” The Central Emergency Planning Team is putting the necessary precautions in place so that tragedies like Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, or Columbine don’t hit the community we call home.