Superintendent’s Comments – October 10, 2018

Blueprint for Excellence Report: District 7 School Safety and Security Enhancements for 2018-2019

At the October 9, 2018, Board of Education meeting, the administration presented to the Board and community the third in a series of updates about the many improvements within the District and for its students made possible through the receipt of Prop E funds. Without these critical funds, curriculum, technology, and school security improvements would not have been possible. Just as important, the passage of Prop E has the District on a path to financial stability as it prepares to pay down a significant portion of its over $5.3 million Education Fund debt by June 30, 2019.

The administration will continue to provide regular updates to the public through two reports – Blueprint for Excellence and Focus on Finance – detailing the following:

  • Curriculum development and textbook updates
  • Technology replacements and enhancements
  • School security enhancements
  • Achievement of financial stability

These reports can be found on the District 7 website and on school webpages under Busniess Operations.

District 7 School Safety and Security Enhancements for 2018-2019

District 7 maintains as its highest priority the providing of a safe and secure learning environment for all its students and staff. Administrators collaborate with law enforcement partners from Edwardsville, Glen Carbon, and the Madison County Sheriff’s Office each year to conduct a school safety and security review of:

  • Procedures and emergency response plans
  • Security equipment and technology
  • Security personnel and visitor management systems
  • Professional development updates for employees

Several school security improvements were recommended as a result of this review and were implemented at the start of the 2018-2019 school year, including:

  • Locking of all main entry doors during the school day
  • Relocating School Security Officers’ desks and visitor management devices closer to the front entrances of all schools
  • Installing electronic visitor entry systems with video and audio communication – A IPhone systems – in each school
  • Installing video surveillance cameras at the main visitor entry points of each school to provide a clear recording of each person entering the school
  • Replacing and installing over 175 security cameras at Edwardsville High School, EHS south, Jon Davis Wrestling Center, and the Sports Complex; increasing to 475 the number of security cameras located across the District’s 14 campuses
  • Expanding the School Safety Officer (SSO) program to include the hours of Kid Zone operations each day – the nine elementary schools that offer Kid Zone now have continuous SSO coverage from 6:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
  • Providing certified staff members with training on an “options-based” active intruder protocol – the 4 E’s concept – from local law enforcement agencies. The focus of this training was on strategies for emergency responses in the event of an armed intruder in the school setting. Through lecture, real-life scenarios and active participation, certified personnel learned how to implement the 4 E’s: educate, evade, escape, and engage.

The Board also received an update on the P3 Campus Text-A-Tip program that began last year at Edwardsville High School. This program uses technology to open communication between students, school administration, and law enforcement. During the 2017-2018 school year, the Edwardsville Police Department received 265 credible tips from students and parents.

District 7 personnel, in conjunction with representatives from local law enforcement agencies, will continue to review and improve school safety and security measures to ensure that our students, employees, and visitors are provided a safe school experience.