Douglas County law enforcement joins school district to announce safety plan
CASTLE ROCK – “School safety is our number one priority, students can’t learn if they are not safe,” said DCSD Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Fagen at a news conference today in Castle Rock. “Keeping Douglas County schools safe is a community effort. I am very proud of the DCSD community and value the partnership the district has with law enforcement.”
Douglas County Sheriff Dave Weaver, Castle Rock Police Chief Jack Cauley, Parker Police Chief David King, and Lone Tree Police Department Commander Ron Pinson joined Fagen to announce a school safety update.
“This partnership is a win-win situation for everyone. Our combined efforts will enhance security within our schools and will increase interaction with staff and students. We will continue to work together to make our schools in each of our communities a safe place to learn,” Castle Rock Police Chief Jack Cauley.
After the tragic events at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December of 2012, DCSD officials met with members of the law enforcement community to review current safety plans and make recommendations to improve an already strong program. The result of those meetings was the creation of the DCSD Safety Committee. The Safety Committee has met throughout the spring to develop recommendations.
“We have a very strong safety program in place for our students. However, we believe in and are committed to continuous improvement. We have learned a lot from recent events. Along with our partners in law enforcement, we are committed to providing the best security to our students and our staff,” continued Fagen.
New school safety measures focus on protocol, deterrence, isolation, screening, and training. All measures are part of a “layered approach” to ensuring safe schools. No single measure can guarantee student safety and DCSD is working with law enforcement to provide a thoughtful, coordinated system in which each element of the system builds upon the next.
Specific measures include building enhancements and the new, innovative School Marshal Program.
“The safety of our children is one of my highest priorities and the School Marshal Program is collaborative, pro-active approach to strike down those that so callously harm innocent children. This program will enable children and school staff to focus on education while feeling safe in their environment,” said Douglas County Sheriff Dave Weaver.
Parker Police Chief David King added, “The Parker Police Department has worked in partnership with the Douglas County School District for many years instilling the safety of the students, faculty and staff. The School Marshall program is another way that our agency will work with our surrounding law enforcement partners to ensure a safe environment for those in our schools.”
The DCSD Safety Committee will continue to meet and review protocols.
The School Security Update can be found at www.dcsdk12.org/schoolsafetyandsecurity/safety
“The opportunity for the Lone Tree Police Department as well as other law enforcement agencies throughout the county to partnership with the Douglas County School District sends a great message,” continued Lone Tree Police Chief Jeff Streeter. “Sadly we are reminded of past events that drive the need to develop new innovative ways to create as safe of an environment for our children in schools. This partnership allows our officers the opportunity to work even closer to the students and staff at schools to enhance safety measures. We look forward to this opportunity and our continual partnerships throughout this county to provide the highest level of service possible.”
The new School Marshal program, will have an estimated cost of approximately $500,000, which will be covered by the District's utility savings.