Friday, May 21, 1999
CCHS proactive in addressing safety
The tragic events at the Littleton, Colorado High School during our April vacation week have raised this question in schools across the nation. Questions have been asked of us, too.
At CCHS we have worked to create a climate of respect in which individuals can build upon their strengths. We work hard to remain alert to potential issues of concern for individuals as well as groups. A weekly meeting of counselors, special education personnel and administrators is held to review student progress, identify any concerns, and develop response plans. A crisis team involving representatives from our guidance, special education, nursing and administrative staff is called together whenever it appears that a student may be in need of intervention/prevention services either because of the student's observable behavior and/or because of reports of potential abusive behaviors by others toward the student.
Information published to faculty and staff indicates warning signs of which we need to be aware and outlines action steps to be followed to report concerns. A student version of this publication has been distributed in homeroom and will be distributed again this fall so that students can be clear about how to report concerns and how to receive assistance. Our very competent counseling and social work staff provide ongoing services for students and parents.
We look into all concerns that are brought to our attention by students, parents, school staff and/or community members. It is standard practice for us to take seriously, remove from the school community, and require an evaluation of any student who makes comments about engaging in violent actions whether directed toward oneself or others. We follow this practice even if we are told that the comments were made in jest.
In addition, regular contact with the local police department, as well as participation in an every other month community based justice meeting involving representatives of area middle and high schools, police departments, the probation office, and the District Attorney's office help us to remain alert to current and potential youth issues in the community.
Finally, a security plan that has been in place for many years has been under review this year. A draft revision has been prepared and will be finalized before the end of the school year.
While all of these efforts cannot guarantee there will never be a problem at our school, we are actively working to provide the safest possible environment for everyone at CCHS. If you have a safety question or concern, please call; what you have to say is important to all of us.
© 1999 The Carlisle Mosquito