WWS response to Connecticut school tragedy


Westfield Washington Schools Families and Staff,

Our hearts are filled with sadness and compassion for those affected by the terrible tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut last Friday.

As we start another week at Westfield Washington Schools, we want to reassure our families, staff, and students that we take school safety very seriously and it continues to be our number one priority. For the past several years, WWS has worked in conjunction with the Westfield Police Department and Westfield Fire Department to develop comprehensive and effective school safety plans to ensure the maximum day-to-day safety at each and every school building. These include:

•Safety plans designed in collaboration with the Westfield Police Department and Westfield Fire Department are in place in the district and for each school.

•Regularly scheduled district School Safety Committee meetings, which are attended by representatives from the Westfield Police Department and Westfield Fire Department. At these meetings, the most recent one occurring last week, safety processes are reviewed and revised, best practices are shared, safety situations are discussed, and input is given from WPD and WFD.

•Safety drills are held on a regular basis at all WWS schools and all drills are scored on a rubric, debriefed for areas of improvement, and recorded in our district strategic plan. Several of our drills are observed by local emergency and safety agencies that debrief the drills and give suggestions and advice for possible improvements.

•School staff is trained through staff meetings and drills on how to activate all safety plans and procedures based on different types of safety situations.

•All visitors are required to use only the main building entrance, which is continuously monitored, and all other school doors are locked. Check-in procedures are in place for all visitors to each school, which includes using ID verification.

•The district employs a School Resource Officer (SRO), as part of our ongoing partnership with the Westfield Police Department, and two WWS School Security Officers.

•We have at least one trained Indiana School Safety Specialist in each of our school buildings with several more located throughout the district.

•The Westfield Police Department uses WWS school buildings to conduct active shooter exercises. This allows them to be familiar with our school building layouts in the case of an emergency situation.

The Connecticut school tragedy causes us all a great deal of concern. The magnitude of this situation certainly provides reason for us to take a fresh look at our safety procedures and see if there are opportunities for improvement. In the wake of this tragedy, we promise that we will continue, just as we always have, to have serious discussions and explore every means available to keep our students and staff members as safe as possible.

Our school counselors will be ready to help and support students in light of this tragedy. Teachers and administrators will be alert to student needs and will do their utmost to ensure that normal, positive, activities continue at each of our schools in the coming days.

Parents are welcome to call their school principal with any questions or concerns.

Thank you for your continued support.


Westfield Washington Schools


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