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Bartolomeo Makes School Safety Recommendations

13th District Sen. Dante Bartolomeo recently visited local schools and on Wednesday shared the input she received with the school security subcommittee of the state's Task Force on Gun Violence Prevention and Children's Safety.

 

Following a meeting Wednesday of the legislature’s Bipartisan Task Force on Gun Violence Prevention and Children’s Safety, state Senator Dante Bartolomeo (D-13th) issued a brief list of some of the school safety recommendations that she has received from the parents, educators, city officials, public safety officers and others in her district that she has met with over the past several weeks.

Sen. Bartolomeo, who serves on the School Security subcommittee of the Bipartisan Task Force, met with residents and town officials from Cheshire, Meriden and Middletown to hear their input on what is needed – and what is not – in order to increase school safety following the horrific tragedy at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown this past December (a planned February 11 meeting in Middlefield was cancelled due to the blizzard.) 

“Parents, school staff and police officers have the best knowledge of what is working and what is not in their local schools, and they have some of the best suggestions as to where Connecticut can take action to improve student safety,” Bartolomeo said. “I’m thankful for their input, which I found insightful and very helpful. The districts had many common concerns, yet each expressed something unique as well. I am forwarding their suggestions to our subcommittee for consideration as the legislature puts together a comprehensive package of school safety, gun safety and mental health proposals.”

The school safety proposals received by Sen. Bartolomeo include:

  • A ‘one-size fits all’ approach does not work for school districts
  • Active Shooter/Intruder drills should be practiced regularly and taken seriously, along with other safety drills
  • Students should be able to receive mental health evaluations/treatment, and districts need some recourse if parents and students refuse to participate
  • Most feel basic school security should include security cameras (and sufficient staff to monitor them), telephone/intercom systems, ‘crisis-response buttons’ and door upgrades
  • All participants would like school resource officers (SROs) in every school, including elementary schools
  • Consider creating a state-wide ‘security’ standard for new school construction or renovation, similar to energy-efficiency and handicapped-accessible requirements
  • Don’t impose new state mandates without sufficient and ongoing state funding

Submitted press release

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