Seeking Safer Schools
Cleveland / Bradley County Schools Getting Safety/Security Check-up
by Louis Lee
Thursday, September 7, 2006

Before the tragedy at Columbine High School, it was taken for granted that our children were safe at school.

That shooting spree, combined with others around the country got school administrators thinking about how to make their schools safer places for youngsters.

In Cleveland and Bradley County, they're not just thinking. They're acting.

News 12's Louis Lee shows us in this.

Safe Families report, what they're doing.

The Two mayors, the Sheriff, Fire Chief, Police Captain. A who's who of emergency responders came to lend support to the schools.

Matt Ryerson, Safe Schools / Healthy Students "Everybody that has any significance and impact in our schools was present at our program today and I think that says a lot about Bradley County. The concern and the caring that these people have."

They came to hear a presentation by Risk Solutions International. A consulting firm hired to evaluate the emergency plans at all county and city schools.

The company specializes in discovering security and safety weaknesses then offering suggestions to correct them.

They will be in Bradley County for the next three months.

Christina Bredhold, Risk Solutions International "First up, we're gonna be conducting surveys with the schools, with the community, as far as the public safety agencies, police, fire, mental health."

The object is to get a plan ready to protect students and staff in the event of anything from a tornado to a terrorist attack.

Normally, a program like this would be cost-prohibitive for a school system.

But Bradley County is one of only three in Tennessee to receive a 3-year, eight million dollar grant to pay for the assessment.

And it's only one of many things the grant has done for the local school systems.

Dr. Rick Denning, Cleveland City Schools "It's been a godsend to tell you the truth. And this is one of them. There are many many aspects to this project as we've been discussing this morning. But I'm just delighted that we have it. We're very fortunate to have it."

Risk Solutions expects to recommend low-cost, high impact solutions to ready the schools, teachers, students and even parents for natural and man-made disasters.

In Cleveland, Louis Lee, News 12.

The first thing on the agenda will be a web-based survey for parents and teachers to take.

Then Risk Solutions will visit each campus in the two districts and go over every inch of property and procedure currently in place.

This story can be found at:

Go Back