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Brick Schools Evaluate Security In Wake of CT Shooting

Security up Monday following deadly incident

Brick Township schools are re-evaluating their security protocols in the wake of a shooting at a Connecticut school that left 20 students dead.

The Dec. 14 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT left parents across the country on edge sending their children to school Monday, but plans for security to be beefed up in Brick were made over the weekend.

Superintendent Dr. Walter Uszenski said plainclothes police officers made visits to schools on Monday, and marked police cars patrolled school areas. Uszenski said he made the plans with Police Chief Nils R. Bergquist over the weekend, and more security measures are in place for the remainder of the week that will not be made public.

Uszenski said he also spoke with each school principal over the weekend, and made sure counselors were available throughout the district if needed.

But Uszenski said long-term plans for security will be paramount going forward, and he may request additional funding to perform some repairs in schools later this week when the Board of Education meets.

In some schools, he said, there are broken doors and malfunctioning locks.

"We have doors that you could kick down, and they need to be replaced immediately," Uszenski said. "This is something I wanted to start yesterday."

Uszenski said he will meet with Bergquist this week and go over the district's emergency plans. He also plans on forming security committees at each school.

He'll also propose giving certain staff members in each school walkie-talkies that connect directly to the police department for use in an emergency, from anywhere on schools grounds.

"In Connecticut, kids were saved by the actions of the teachers," said Uszenski. "They used the same drills we do."

Board President Sharon Cantillo proposed looking into providing more resources toward the mental health aspect of education.

"I think that, maybe, we need to devote more resources to our child study teams, guidance counselors and mental health professionals to identify problems when children are younger," said Cantillo.

"It needs to go beyond just the physical security," she said. "We need to think about that, because I think that was a large part of what happened in Connecticut, in Columbine and in every mass tragedy. People tend to bury that under the rug, but it's the elephant in the room."

WMS826 December 18, 2012 at 10:59 PM
They already have this Ann, all except cops on premise during the day. perhaps we can pay for this too if we cut out the cash for clunker program, the back door Solyndra deals, and Obamas multi million dollar vacations while more and more are on welfare.
jen December 18, 2012 at 11:07 PM
It's all about priorities when it comes to where taxpayer dollars go. Maybe now school safety will be more important than other things the money usually goes toward.
brick mom 61 December 19, 2012 at 10:28 AM
Approximately 2 weeks ago, an adult male chased a couple of kids into Brick Memorial HS, and got far enough into the HS to stand in an interior stairwell while the kids were in the hall. No alarm was sounded, nothing was done except my daughter noticed police in the parking lot the next day. Apparently it was someone from Jersey Farms that was chasing kids that stole from the store. While I understand his anger, there is no way he should have gained access into the school like that. Also, kids leave and return frequently to the school and when I ask my daughter how students get back in, she said there are always dooors that are open. So the front door may be locked, but overall the security is terrible.
Sal Petoia December 19, 2012 at 03:56 PM
No one can dispute the massacre at Sandy Hook was a tragedy, but the reaction to blame the guns is an understandable albeit hysterical one. Making guns illegal would only mean that law abiding citizens would be deprived of having them. Criminals with evil intentions would still get them through a black market. Not usually reported by the media are many cases in America where guns in the hands of decent people have served to protect them and their families from those who would do them harm. Against unarmed people a perpetrator is free to kill and maim at will. Even if a person so disturbed and determined to carry out a mass killing did not have a gun, there are other ways to carry out the deed…. a firebomb tossed through a window, driving a vehicle through throngs of innocent people, etc. Airplanes were used as weapons to kill over 3000 people on 9/11, along with other attempts having been made. Should we ban airplanes? Trucks were used in the Oklahoma City and first World Trade Center bombings. Should we ban trucks? Trashing the Second Amendment would certainly please those who would like to see a disarming of the American people, but it will not prevent tragedies like the Sandy Hook massacre from happening. Perhaps more at fault than guns is our culture of violence… television shows, video games and movies have all contributed to desensitizing people to violence. Add a lessening of moral values and we have the ingredients for catastrophic events.
WMS826 December 20, 2012 at 01:27 AM
And you're kids did what about this condition. Dd they say something, did they lock the doors....did you say something...did yo call or attend a board meeting. Maybe call the cops and school resource officer. Please...you cry about this but take no action,....I wag my finger in shame at you.

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