Santa Paula teachers want a district-wide safety plan
By Brian D. Wilson
Santa Paula News
Published: January 18, 2013
In light of recent school shootings at schools in various parts of the nation, Santa Paula teachers want a safety plan for the elementary school.
Carolyn Ishida, president of the local Federation of Teachers, told Santa Paula Elementary School District board members, “As teachers we need support. We would like a comprehensive safety plan that we’ve been asking for the past two years.”
She noted that, as of Tuesday evening, McKevett School doesn’t have a public address system. “I got a report that the gates at Blanchard are totally unlocked and open, and I also got a report that at Isbell the back fence is open,” she said. “We want to protect students, but we need help and we need a plan and we need leadership.”
Ishida said some school sites are doing drills. She said one author reported that in 63 years no student has been killed in a fire at school. “And yet we do fire drills every month.”
She added, “It’s a lockdown and a shooter on the campus; those are the drills that we should be practicing. And I think of the momentum of what’s happening in the country and it’s not necessarily talking about gun control. It is addressing a fear about all the violence that kids are seeing on TV, on their video games and in the movies. These are issues that we need to address in our public schools.”
She also said they need to give teachers and staff the tools to be able to know that they can protect their kids.
Board member Michelle Kolbeck asked that a report come back to the board on the issue of safety.