TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Continuing the conversation on school safety, local superintendents weigh in
One month after the shooting in Parkland, Florida, area superintendents are continuing the conversation on school safety.
"All of us probably get up in the morning with the same thought that let's pray that it doesn't happen here," said Bowling Green City Schools Superintendent Francis Scruci.
Three superintendents, Hal Gregory from Oregon , Adam Fineske from Sylvania, and Francis Scruci from Bowling Green sat down answering questions about what's being done in their districts.
They're stressing no threats are jokes and listening to students is how we move forward.
"We are now looking at ways that we can put our kids in situations, and the number one thing that they asked for, they wanted to know what shots sounded like in a school," said Gregory.
When talking about the students, Dr. Fineske says district leaders should be taking their concerns seriously.
"They're attuned, they know the building, they know the environment in the building, and they've got great questions and great concerns and we need to be open to listening to them," said Fineske.
When parents ask these superintendents what they are doing about their student's safety, all three agree, communication is key.
"There is a lot more questions being raised now than ever before about what is going on with safety," said Gregory.
"When you hesitate to communicate to parents, you only breed fear," added Scruci.
"In the world of social media and instant communication they expect to get that communication and look for it, so it's more important for school districts now with the heightened safety and security talk to make sure we are communicating," echoed Fineske.
Scruci confesses teachers in his district are struggling just as much as students.
"With the talk and differing conversations about what do we do? Do we arm teachers? Our teachers didn't necessarily get into education to be a law enforcement officer, they also didn't get into education to be shot," said Scruci.
Whether it's partnerships with law enforcement, ALICE training, or communication with students and parents, these three tell me they'll try it all.
"Focusing in Oregon on increased uniform police officers in our buildings," said Gregory.
"I think focusing for us on the proactive measures, our counseling support, that we look at mental health," said Fineske.
"It's important that we listen to those voice and our legislators hear it clear and that money is made available for mental health services," said Scruci.
The biggest thing they stressed is what they can do within certain funding parameters.
Fineske says he hopes if state and federal level legislators are mandating certain requirements, they back it up with the funding.