Broadalbin-Perth taking safety precautions into consideration - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Broadalbin-Perth taking safety precautions into consideration

BROADALBIN, N.Y. - The Broadalbin-Perth School District, like many, started receiving calls from parents and community members immediately after the horrific school shooting in Connecticut. Many of the calls coming in had a lot of the same ideas, so the school district set up a meeting where they could hear out everyone at once.

After an outpouring of concerned parents and community members voiced concern over the Newtown shooting, more than 100 people including parents, students, faculty and the school board, showed up to help the Broadalbin-Perth School District become a safer place.

Michele Kelley, the District Communications Specialist says, "We actually received a list of about a dozen ideas from a district parent who is also a police officer, so those were very interesting and the board is taking all of them into consideration."

The School District says these conversations are not easy to have, and striking a balance between safety, and a school-like atmosphere is not done quickly.

Aaron Fonda, a senior at Broadalbin-Perth says, "There has been a lot of scares around here, and it has effected some people personally, mentally, and some people don't feel safe coming to the school. And so I like to think of what the school could do about this."

Stephen Tomlinson, the District Superintendent says, "There's a fine line between turning our buildings into a prison-like atmosphere and keeping them as education institutions for our students. Certainly our students don't want to be walking hallways of a school where all they're looking at is brick and mortar. So the board of education has some decisions to make as to just how far we are willing to go in keeping our children safe."

After going over a list of safety measures the school already has in place, the floor opened to any comments, questions, or suggestions. Everyone got involved in the conversation, with one local dad saying, "The ideas and suggestions are wonderful, to protect from people from the outside, they're not going to protect from within."

Tomlinson wants people to know he, too, feels emotional about the situation at hand, "My daughter is in first grade, so Sandy Hook hit, hit home with most of the victims first grade students. So the decisions that I will bring to the board of education and the recommendations I will bring to the board of education, are not only in the best interest of what I believe would be good for the community, but also my wife and my daughter in 1st grade."

The School District plans on implementing new safety features immediately if possible, though some ideas will require more time and budget considerations. Their biggest concern will remain finding a balance between keeping the kids safe, and keeping the kids happy in their school atmosphere.
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