VBCPS - Charting the Course
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Lauren Nolasco
Date: 04/10/18 Phone: 757.263.1234
News Release No. 048 Fax: 757.263.1010
Email: lauren.nolasco@vbschools.com

VBCPS to convene Blue Ribbon Panel
on school safety

Superintendent Dr. Aaron Spence has announced that Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) will bring together community leaders and security experts to form a Blue Ribbon Panel on School Safety and Security. This spring, the panel will analyze VBCPS' current security practices and procedures and provide recommendations on how to best enhance the division's work.

"To be clear, our schools are safe. We have dedicated staff members in this division who ensure that our schools are secure and welcoming places for our students and families each and every day," Spence said. "However, with student safety and well-being as our top priority, we have an obligation to leave no stone unturned in our efforts to provide the safest school environments possible. I am thankful we have such capable and willing community partners to aid in this work and share their expertise. I have full confidence in this panel's collective ability to bring forward innovative recommendations and practices to implement in our schools."

Serving on this panel will be officers from Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana, representatives from the Virginia Beach Police Department as well as staff from the City of Virginia Beach's Child and Youth Services Division. They will join principals and staff from the division's offices of Safety and Loss Control and Student Support Services for a comprehensive review of schools' security practices.

Specifically, the panel will work to answer three main questions:

  • What are the division's current best practices?
  • What division and community resources can be deployed in other ways to strengthen this work?
  • What gaps exist that need to be addressed, either in processes or assets (e.g., personnel, security equipment)?

The panel will meet and work through June, with the tentative goal of providing a report of findings and recommendations for the School Board at the its annual retreat in July.

School administration has already begun increasing security measures at schools in the 2018-19 school year. As part of the budget development process, for example, funds were identified to install a buzz-in locking system at every school and center in the division beginning this year. To learn more about other safety and security measures already in place, visit http://www.vbschools.com/schools/safety/index.asp.

For more information about this panel's work or the new buzz-in system, please contact the Office of Safety and Loss Control at 757-263-2450.


Department of Media and Communications, vbcpsweb@vbschools.com

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