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School Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Parents around the country have indicated that their primary concern today, educational programs notwithstanding, is the safety and security of their children while at school. This concern is a direct result of the kinds of incidents experienced at Columbine High School in Colorado and other schools across the United States, as well as the terrorist attacks on America on September 11, 2001.

Much has been written about those incidents and the steps taken by individual school districts to maintain the health and safety of students and staff. After September 11, we at Pennsbury were asked: "Can you guarantee that something like Columbine or the World Trade Center attacks won't happen here?"

The true answer is that no one can make such a guarantee. However, long before the questions arose, Pennsbury was busy taking steps to make the school environment as safe as possible. Over two years ago, the District received more than $102,000 as part of a Safe Schools grant awarded by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Those funds allowed Pennsbury to:

  • Install 16 security surveillance cameras and a multiplex recorder in Pennsbury High School (East and West) to increase security and track visitors.

  • Give key administrators direct contact with principals and each other through Nextell Communications Systems when quick decisions are required for student and staff safety. The units operate as phones, pagers and walkie-talkies.

  • Train four teams of elementary school personnel in peer mediation and conflict resolution techniques.

  • Train ten staff members in three buildings in the Responsive Classroom program, which provides students with an opportunity to develop problem solving skills and peaceful resolutions to potential conflicts.

The District also has outfitted school buses with cameras, which record activity inside buses. The cameras have reduced the number of incidents taking place on buses dramatically.

Finally, the District has in place a Crisis Response Plan which provides information on how to handle everything from an armed intruder in the building to natural disasters, medical emergencies, bomb threats and the like.

The Crisis Response Plan is on every administrator's and secretary's desk and is routinely reviewed and updated.

Anyone with questions regarding school safety and security should call the Office of Pupil Services at 215-428-4181.

Pennsbury School District
134 Yardley Avenue, PO Box 338
Fallsington, PA 19058
Telephone: 215-428-4100
Mission Statement
Recognizing our proud traditions and diverse community,
the Pennsbury School District prepares all students to become creative,
ethical, and critical thinkers for lifelong success in a global society.
national district of character
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