Northborough-Southborough to host safe school initiative

Later this month, Algonquin will play host to a training program that aims to prevent targeted acts of violence in our schools. It’s a topic that has taken on heightened meaning in light of recent tragedies. Here’s more information on the session, which is open to educators, law enforcement officials, counselors, and medical care providers, among others.

The Public Schools of Northborough and Southborough and the Southborough Police Department in collaboration with the Northborough Police Department have been chosen to be a host site for the “Safe School Initiative and Threat Assessment” training developed by the U.S. Department of Education and Secret Service.

The training program is coordinated through the Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools Technical Assistance (REMS TA) Center. The training session, to be held on August 21, 2012, is open to educators, counselors and school administrators in K-12 public, private schools, and post-secondary schools, law enforcement officials, non-profit agencies, counselors, and medical care providers. This event will be held at Algonquin Regional High School, 79 Bartlett Street, Northborough, MA. Advance registration is required. The program starts promptly at 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM.

Southborough Police Chief Jane Moran and Northborough-Southborough Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Christine Johnson stated in the application, “the communities of Northborough and Southborough continue to explore opportunities that will enhance the safety and well-being of all our students and the community at large while providing a venue that supports collaboration, communication and policy, and procedural development.”

This special training session presents the findings from the “Safe School Initiative,” a study conducted by the U.S. Department of Education and the Secret Service. The study focused on the actions of students, including their thinking, planning and other behaviors, who carried out attacks on schools. The session includes strategies for educators, counselors, law enforcement officials and others to identify, intervene and prevent targeted acts of violence. The training provides strategies for incorporating the threat assessment process which and the identification of potentially at risk students.

Chief Moran and Ms. Johnson additionally said that, unfortunately, all schools across the country and community are potential targets for random acts of violence and that through this training and grant initiative, proactive methods will be developed to prevent any form of harm to students and members of the Northborough and Southborough communities.

The Northborough-Southborough Public Schools and the Police Departments plan to apply for a REMS TA grant as funding becomes available. In 2010, grants were awarded up to $100,000. This discretionary grant program provides schools and local educational agencies (LEA) with funding to improve and strengthen their emergency management plans, designed to address four phases of emergency management: Prevention, Mitigation, Preparedness, and Response and Recovery.

This workshop is provided at no cost to attendees. Participants will receive copies of the PowerPoint presentation, resource materials, and a CD-Rom entitled, “Threat Assessment in Schools.” For further information regarding registration for the training session, please contact Ms. Johnson at the Central Office of the Public Schools of Northborough and Southborough at 508-486-5115 x 241.

Additional information can be found in this flyer. Follow this link to register online for the training.

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