Letter to Parents, Re: Safety Improvements at Hazelwood West Middle School
Hazelwood West Middle School administrators and district officials, including the HSD school safety department, have collaborated to develop a plan to ensure the safety of students in our school. After a thorough review of our safety procedures, we have found some things that we can improve upon and we will strengthen our resolve to ensure our students’ safety.
► It is imperative that we decrease the number of unsupervised students in the hallways between classes and while students are in classrooms during instructional time.
- All students will be required to have school planners with them at all times when in the hallways. If students lose their planner, either a new planner or planner sheets will be required.
- Staff will continue to use their professional judgment when allowing students to leave class.
- While students are in the hallway during instructional time, staff members will ask students where they are headed.
- Staff members will expect students to show their signed planner sheet that gives permission to be in the hallway during that time. All students will be expected to comply with this request.
- Students will not be allowed to work on assignments in hallways by the classroom door, but will be required to go to a “buddy” room.
► Supervision throughout the building can improve.
- Throughout the school day and during after-school activities, additional staff members will be assigned to designated areas of the building to check restrooms and hallways on a more frequent basis, both during school hours and during after school activities until 4:30 p.m.
- Staff will actively supervise the hallway and the following strategically-designated locations throughout the school: in the gym and on the outside track during physical education classes, stairwells, near cafeteria-entrance doors, and side stairwell exits during dismissal time.
- Additionally, our staff restrooms will be locked throughout the day.
- While students are in the cafeteria during lunchtime, we will leave the restrooms open while students are eating, but at lunch dismissal, we will close them to ensure that students do not go into them unsupervised.
► All exterior doors need to be locked during the school day.
- Our emergency exit doors (in stairwell) will be locked, allowing students and visitors to exit the building, but not re-enter. Currently, our students use this stairwell during dismissal only, so this will not create an issue for students at the end of the school day.
► Students must wear their IDs in plain sight.
- Staff will be expected to enforce procedures requiring our students to wear ID badges.
Since our initial review last week, the school district safety director has re-visited the campus and has already noticed significant improvement.
Staff and students who fail to follow the procedures outlined above will be subject to appropriate corrective action.
Thank you to our many parents for coming to our meeting last week to discuss your children’s safety. We also appreciate your candor as we work together to create the best working environment for our children at West Middle and throughout the district. We must continue to be vigilant in all of our buildings and take what we have learned and apply it to all buildings in the district.
In conjunction with our PTSA, we are looking to create a safety council at West Middle that includes staff, students and parents alike. Please contact the school if you are interested in serving on this committee.
With much respect,
Dr. Steve Price, Superintendent
Dr. Allison E. Klouse, Building Principal