EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSNew Hire And Police Make Sure Kanawha County Schools Are Safe
from Eyewitness News Online
Reported by: Katy Brown
Videographer: Troy Morgan
Web Producer: Katy Brown
Reported: Sep. 22, 2013 5:03 PM EDT
Updated: Sep. 22, 2013 6:45 PM EDT
Charleston , Kanawha County , West Virginia
Stories of school shootings have been in the headlines during recent years.
And because of the possibility of those things happening here, partnerships between Kanawha County schools and local law enforcement are taking strides to help protect our schools.
For resource officer Cpl. Paxton Lively, the possibility of something like the Sandy Hook or the Columbine shooting is a reality.
"It's a reality in my mind," Lively said. "It's just a matter of 'when,' not 'if.'"
Kanawha County schools are doing what they can to make sure it does not happen here. Charlie Warner is the Security And Risk Management Specialist for Kanawha County schools, a brand new position in the district.
"A safe building will help foster a good learning environment," Warner said.
He makes sure each school is up to date on its security measures that include, front door security cameras, an intercom, and a police presence within the schools.
"This is my seventh year as a resource officer," Lively said. "And talking to the staff members, administrators that were here prior to me being here, they said it really made a difference."
And it was the presence of resource officers and new security tools that recently played major roles in two recent incidents at Kanawha County schools.
An employee at Hayes Middle School was arrested after having a gun on school property. And another incident occurred when a janitor made a bomb threat at a Cross Lanes Elementary.
"[The Cross Lanes incident] was handled wonderfully," Warner said. "The technology worked perfectly. The school went on lockdown, made the appropriate arrest and the situation was mitigated. Everyone did what they were supposed to."
And that leaves Warner confident Kanawha County schools will remain safe.
"What we want to is do our best to be proactive to try to make our schools as safe as possible," Warner said. "So things like those types of tragedies don't happen in the Kanawha Valley."
Over the next few weeks, the new school security leader will be the touring all schools throughout the county to make sure everyone's security standards are up to par.
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