In the wake of Tuesday’s traumatic events at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, many of our staff and parents are directing questions to our schools about how we can ensure their child’s (or their own) safety. In order that we are consistent in our message to the community, following are some key talking points for your use when responding to our community’s concerns.
Today, we watched in horror and grief the events that unfolded at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. Our hearts are breaking for those lost, and for the families and educators whose lives have been forever changed by the actions of one person. Our best prevention of such tragedies lies with our team of teachers, principals, and other staff on our campuses every day and our parent community, and the and the hundreds of eyes and ears that they lend to securing our schools.
In addition to extensive character development, social-emotional support systems, and safety plans in place at every school, we regularly conduct practice drills (including lock down, fire, facility alert and evacuation drills) so that our staff and students are very familiar with our procedures designed to immediately protect students and staff. A trained team of sworn police officers are also in place in Clovis Unified. Our district police force provides another line of defense to protect our schools, and work in partnership with our valuable law enforcement partners in our local police and sheriffs’ offices.
In general, we wish to reassure parents that we are proactive toward safety, and that we approach our safety efforts with an understanding that we have to be prepared for the unimaginable. The first three points are specifically designed to address questions about our open campuses and suggestions that we fully fence and lock our schools.
We also want to emphasize that at its core, our work revolves around our people and the supportive and trusting relationships they form with our students so that we learn of concerns early, wrap our students in physical, emotional, and social supports, and maximize the eyes and ears of our staff, students, parents and community to keep our schools safe.