School safety is in the forefront of the minds of almost everyone in the country, now during the aftermath of the Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut. Some parents here in our community have a heightened worry about school safety, due to the recent body that was found near the parking lot of Therrell High School during the winter break.
Atlanta Public Schools Security Chief, Marquenta Sands, decided to hold a number of forums across the district for parents and students about school safety and what APS' plans are to keep students safe in the future.
Dates and Locations:
January 8th (Therrell HS)
January 9th (Grady HS)
January 15th (Carver HS of Technology)
January 16th (Bolton Academy)
Time: 6:00-8:00 p.m.
The message that went out to local parents ahead of the Therrell High forum read:
Happy New Year STEMS parents...I encourage each of you to attend the School Safety Forum tonight at Therrell High School beginning at 6:00pm. It is important that we attend this meeting to have an understanding of APS's policies and procedures regarding school safety.
A parent who attended the meeting stated that she left underwhelmed. She is a parent who is disturbed by the gangs both inside and outside the school, but she was also very shaken up by the murder over the holiday break, and was disappointed that that issue hardly was discussed in Wednesday's meeting.
The parent told me that, "parents are not as alarmed as I would have thought... maybe a sign of the neighborhood." She went on to write:
I attended a safety meeting today at Therrell High School but it seems like some tongues may be tied. Only mention of events (gang violence and the young man's murder) was that they are investigating. I would like a forum on the gangs terrorizing APS and the efforts of APD and APS to secure our students safety in school and within the parameters of campus. I will not be satisfied until there is a publicized sweep of these dangerous individuals who operate in the open.
Additional APS security meetings are scheduled in the days to come, you are still encouraged to attend and make you voices heard. School safety is a big issue that will continue to be debated during the early part of 2013.