BGISD Superintendent talks schools safety, security for upcoming school year

BGISD Superintendent Talks About School Safety Ahead of Upcoming Year
Published: Aug. 16, 2022 at 5:38 AM CDT
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - Bowling Green Independent School District are headed back today, and for many parents and students, school security and safety is in the forefront of their minds.

“To our students, and our parents, it’s very natural to be anxious, right? I mean, you see what happened in Uvalde, and other parts of the country. And that’s scary,” said BGISD Superintendent Gary Fields.

Ronnie Ward, the Public Information Officer with the Bowling Green Police Department, said one of the things they do every year is an active shooter training with other police and emergency personnel in the city.

“We will go through new ideas, maybe new concepts, maybe new ways to train to make sure that we’re most up to date, and then we spread that knowledge across everyone that that is able to attend,” Ward said. “The truth of the matter is, if there’s a mass shooting in Bowling Green, we’re going to be the first ones to respond. But we know that the sheriff’s department, Western Kentucky [University], State Police, and the other agencies around here are going to be responding as well”.

In addition to the School Resource Officer at Bowling Green High School, there will be two new SROs added to the district. One will be at the Junior High and the other will float between the Elementary schools.

“The reason we have a full-time SRO at the high school and junior high school is that covers most of our students about 58% of our students are in those two schools,” he said.

Fields said that while anxiety about going back to school may be natural, he wants parents and students to know that the district’s number one priority is keeping its students and staff safe.

“Parents need to understand that sometimes they’re going to be aggravated if we have them scan their ID at the front door, or where they don’t get as much access to the building,” Fields said. “Understand that that’s just part of the procedures.”

He also added that if you hear or see something, say something.

“We have the S.T.O.P. tipline that’s on our website, you can anonymously report anything that is a concern, even if you think it may be not a big deal,” Fields said. “If you tell us we investigate it, and that’s the best way to keep our kids and staff safe.”

The first day of school for preschoolers in the district is Monday, Aug. 22.

This year there will be pre-school classrooms in three locations: T. C. Cherry, The Foundry, and Parker-Bennett-Curry Elementary.

They will meet four days per week.

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