District 7 Comprehensive School Safety Procedures
Posted: August 15,2013
continues to be District 7’s number one priority. The tragedy at Sandy Hook
Elementary School in December 2012 caused shock waves around the world. No one
knows what goes on in the mind of someone who could commit such an act, but the
loss of so many innocent children and those who were charged with their care has
caused all of us to reflect and ask ourselves whether we are doing everything
within reason to protect our children.
The District 7 Safety Committee
The District 7 Safety Committee is currently comprised of Madison
County Sheriff Bob Hertz; Edwardsville Police Department Chief Jay
Keeven and representatives from his staff; Lt. Charlie Kohlberg,
former Head of the District 7 School Resource Officer program and
School Safety Officer Program; Glen Carbon Police Department Chief
John Lakin; Jack Fox, Retired US Secret Service Agent; Chris
Williams, Special Agent, US Secret Service; Phil Melcher, National
Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA); District 7 Social Workers and
Psychologists; and District administrators.
The goal is to provide a safe and secure learning environment
through continuous assessment that includes:
Improvement of the school environment through a no tolerance policy
Teaching the importance of tolerance, civility, and respect
Constant practice and drills to enhance awareness and preparedness
should there be an emergency
Identification of and support for individuals who are in need of
mental health intervention
Enhancement of physical security measures to deter and reduce the
risk of harm to our students and staff
Reduction of as many risk factors as possible that may ultimately
lead to school disruption or violence
Through the efforts and the many years of collaboration amongst our
law enforcement partners, the District has implemented many safety
initiatives, including the following:
An intergovernmental agreement among District 7, the Edwardsville
Police Department, the Glen Carbon Police Department, and the
Madison County Sheriff’s Department. Through this agreement, we meet
and share information in a proactive manner that allows potential
problems to be addressed prior to an incident.
An intergovernmental agreement between District 7 and the
Edwardsville Police Department to place four (4) School Resource
Officers (Edwardsville Police Officers) at the middle schools and
Controlled access to all schools, with School Safety Officers at the
entrance of each building. All other doors are locked.
Regular walk-throughs of each building by Glen Carbon, Edwardsville,
Madison County police officers, and/or School Safety Officers.
Mental health protocol for students and staff who are in need of
support. We believe this is the strongest component of the
District’s safety program, as it serves as a form of identification
and support for those individuals who are in need of assistance.
Partnership with Gateway Medical Center to support cases where
mental health intervention is required within 24 hours.
K-12 anti-bullying program that is supported by 10 social workers,
12 psychologists, 7 counselors, and 13 school nurses.
Comprehensive, individualized emergency plans at the District and
An annual Security Audit and Vulnerability Assessment of each
building, conducted by Sgt. Charlie Kohlberg of the Edwardsville
Police Department, in cooperation with the Glen Carbon Police
Department and the Madison County Sheriff’s Department at the
beginning of each school year. The Safety Committee, headed by Sgt.
Kohlberg and District 7 staff, corrects any areas that may cause a
breach in security.
Communication response system (School Reach emergency notification
system) that contacts parents/guardians in the event of an
emergency, potential safety concerns, and school cancellation.
Interior and exterior surveillance cameras, which are evaluated
regularly and upgraded or replaced as necessary.
2013-2014 Safety Improvements
Installation of new classroom door locks so that all teachers can
lock doors from the inside of the classroom.
Installation of panic or duress alarms at each school, which can be
activated at two locations. The alarm will contact public safety
officials if/when activated.
Update school floor plans to include camera locations and provide to
Glen Carbon Police Department, Edwardsville Police Department, and
the Madison County Sheriff’s Department.
Implementation of Remote Camera Access. The District is implementing
remote access to security cameras for law enforcement officials.
This will allow the police departments to access the interior
surveillance cameras to determine security vulnerability and/or
of surveillance cameras to front entrance of all school buildings.
Visitors and parents will be required to show identification to be
granted access to the building. Cameras will record individuals
entering the building.
Increased Safety Measures at Hamel, Midway, and Worden Due to Their
Proximity to the Police Department and the Response Time for Police
Assistance – the District has collaborated with Madison County
Sheriff Bob Hertz, Hamel Mayor Larry Bloemker, and Worden Mayor
Preston Hall to place a part-time officer at Hamel, Midway, and
Worden Elementary Schools. This collaborative effort is a huge step
toward improving police presence and response time should there be a
need. The police officers will be in the building at different times
of the day and will have a dedicated workspace, as well as access to
a computer and telephone.
Require all District 7 employees to wear ID badges.
Require middle school and high school students (Grades 6-12) to wear
ID badges. To be implemented for the 2013-2014 school year.
District 7 Mental Health Safety Protocol for Students and Staff
District 7’s approved safety protocol addresses individuals who may
exhibit symptoms or signs indicating that they could cause harm to
themselves or to others. This safety protocol is not viewed as
punitive but rather is seen as a means of getting help for those who
are in need.
Students may be excluded from school after it is determined through
a protocol that he/she may be at risk for suicide or engaging in
activity that is physically harmful to the student or to another
person. The student will not be permitted to return to school until
the principal receives written confirmation from a psychiatrist,
certified clinical psychologist, licensed clinical social worker, or
licensed clinical professional counselor stating it is safe for the
student to return and that the student is not in danger of hurting
himself/herself or others.
The Board has a formal agreement with Gateway Medical Center for
families requiring assistance in obtaining an assessment of the
student’s status. The District coordinates with Gateway Medical
Center to obtain a student assessment and subsequent treatment by a
psychiatrist or certified clinical psychologist, licensed clinical
social worker, or licensed clinical professional counselor.
The treating professional or physician must sign off that it is safe
for the student to return to school, and that the student is not in
danger of hurting himself/herself or others. School staff members
are in contact with parents as part of this process, allowing
parents and/or students to share information with the school staff.
For the well-being of the student, the parent(s)/guardian(s) are
requested to provide consent for release of certain information.
This information is used for the purpose of providing a safe
environment for students, employees, and visitors.
District 7 Emergency Plans and Protocol
The District has an emergency plan as well as individual plans for
each building. Included are safety drills that teachers and students
practice on a frequent basis. There are three key components of the
emergency plan: Code Stay, Code Move, and Code Yellow. These codes
are comprised of a simple set of emergency directives and procedures
that staff members are to follow, without hesitation, to protect
themselves and their students.
Summer Safety Review
Each summer, the District meets with local law enforcement officials
(Sheriff Bob Hertz, Edwardsville Chief of Police Jay Keeven, and
Chief John Lakin) to discuss current and new trends in areas such as
violence and drug and alcohol abuse, specifically within the
boundaries of District 7.
During June, the Safety Committee convened and reviewed the data
relating to illegal drug distribution and violence, which is always
critical because of our proximity to St. Louis and connections to
major interstates. The data showed that there wasn’t an increase in
drug activities from 2012 to 2013.
The concern continues to be with the influx of the new heroin; the
more potent, home grown marijuana; and the distribution of
As part of the District 7 Project DrugSmart program that was
launched in the fall of 2011, an educational film was produced to
educate students and parents regarding the rampant and growing use
of a new form of heroin. This film was produced in collaboration
with SIUE and local law enforcement agencies and was shown
throughout the State of Illinois.
The focus for 2013-2014 will continue to be on education regarding
prescription drug abuse and distribution. A second film will be
produced by the fall of 2013.
District 7 Safety Programs
District 7 works closely with parents and law enforcement
agencies to ensure that all schools are safe. School safety
is enhanced by a comprehensive program that includes
state-of-the-art safety and security technology, school
safety personnel, emergency preparedness planning,
intervention protocol, and educational programming.
Every person visiting a District 7 school is required to
show photo identification and is then issued a visitor’s
badge before proceeding to his/her destination. The
identification is scanned and entered into a database. The
system searches the State of Illinois sex offender registry,
and a visitor’s badge is printed.
Visitor management security technology has been installed in
all District 7 schools.
district employees can access various points of their school
buildings by a biometric signature from a finger or thumb
coupled with a proximity card reader.
All District 7 schools use surveillance equipment that can
be monitored from a remote location by designated personnel
or archived for review at a later time.
School Safety Officers can view the school’s surveillance
system via their laptop computers at their work stations in
real time. They may also switch among cameras to view
specific areas of the building.
School Safety Officers are responsible for conducting
perimeter checks on the school building exteriors, including
doors, playgrounds, and parking lots. School Safety Officers
are vigilant in their observation of any person or persons
who do not belong on school property.
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