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Mentor Public Schools Superintendent Talks About School Safety

Matthew Miller discusses the district's safety measures in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting

Mentor Schools Superintendent Matthew Miller issued a letter to all the parents and guardians of students in his district Monday.

In it, he addressed the district's safety plans, specifying how the district prepares for crises and what steps have been taken to improve student and staff safety.

Dear Mentor Schools Parents and Guardians,

As a nation, community and school district we mourn for the families of Newtown, Connecticut who have been affected by the terrible tragedy that happened at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Friday.

We can only imagine the pain and suffering the victims’ loved ones are experiencing in the wake of such a senseless act of violence that words of sympathy do not seem to be enough. Still, we will keep the Newtown community in our thoughts and prayers.

I realize this tragedy has raised questions by many of you about our own safety procedures here at Mentor Schools. The safety of our students and staff is the number one priority of the district.

We continually work with local law enforcement and emergency officials to evaluate, update and practice safety plans and procedures for each of our buildings to make sure we are as prepared for every crisis as possible.

Our staff members diligently conduct emergency drills regularly and truly care about the well-being and safety of your children.

In the last several months, we have increased spending to improve our security features, including the addition of cameras at several of our buildings.

Today, I had further conversations regarding school safety with Mentor Fire Chief Richard Harvey and Mentor Police Captain Kevin Knight, who was recently appointed to the Chief position when Chief Dan Llewellyn retires in January.

As we are currently on winter break, I encourage you to talk to your child(ren) about the tragedy in a manner you feel is appropriate. Here is a link to an article from the Huffington Post you may find helpful in approaching this sensitive topic.

I would also like to take this time to remind everyone in our school community that communication is vital to safety. I encourage anyone who suspects suspicious behavior toward our schools or community to contact me at 974-5220, our crisis hotline at 974-HOME or emergency officials directly via 911.

Upon returning to school on January 3, our guidance counseling staff will be available to any children who may need their services. As always, we value your feedback in helping to keep Mentor Schools a safe place where students can learn and grow.

Thank you for your trust in Mentor Public Schools,

Matthew Miller
Superintendent

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