The RSU 21 School Community is incredibly saddened by the most recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida. School shootings are occuring in increasing numbers. While the reasons for these senseless acts of violence remain debated, it is critical that we continue to work together to safeguard our students and staff. Over the past decade, we have worked hard to not only practice these safeguards but also to put many proactive and preventative measures into place. Our local first responders have been invaluable partners in this effort.
According to Chief Craig Sanford of the Kennebunkport Police Department, “We remain ever mindful of our responsibilities to safeguard our local schools during terrible events such as those that have been experienced in Florida this week. Law enforcement continues to be involved in a partnership with our school system so as to create a safe environment for all to learn and grow.”
Lieutenant Eric O’Brien of the Kennebunk Police Department further shared, “School safety is a priority with the Kennebunk Police Department. We work very closely with our school community and we feel a positive working relationship helps foster a safe atmosphere for the students and faculty. Our officers are familiar with school layouts, events in the school community, and work with staff to conduct safety drills and plan for extraordinary events. In addition to school resource officers, our officers routinely visit schools to maintain a presence in a positive manner.”
This week we have provided counselors for students and resources for parents and guardians. Looking ahead, we will continue to examine and update our emergency preparedness plans and protocols in partnership with our local law enforcement agencies. While we can not prevent every unsafe act that may occur in our schools, we can work tirelessly to deter, prepare for, and minimize potential threats. School safety is our top priority.