With Newton Falls schools instituting a clear-backpacks policy and Warren City schools installing metal detectors at its doors, Brookfield Board of Education member Jerry Necastro said Brookfield should consider additional safety measures.
“School safety should be important to us all,” he said July 20, encouraging Supt. Toby Gibson to look into clear backpacks.
The board briefly discussed clear backpacks without deciding to require them.
“With me, with the clear backpacks, I become reluctant this close to the school year,” Gibson said. “I think, if you do something like that, you almost have to purchase some” so everybody has one.
Board member Melissa Sydlowski said she had encouraged the dean of students at Trumbull Career and Technical Center, where she teaches, to require clear backpacks. “We had a couple incidents this year as well with hidden things in hidden places.”
Board President Sarah Kurpe asked about directives or funding coming from the state. Gibson responded that there are grant programs, but not a lot of guidance as to what schools should do.
Board member Derek Mihalcin said the subject should be on the agenda for the buildings and grounds committee, and at the board’s Aug. 25 meeting he said safety measures has been reviewed at the subsequent committee meeting.
“I was really satisfied with the level of safety, things that are in place for pretty much every situation,” Mihalcin said. “Way more than I actually expected that there was.
Separately, Brookfield Fire Chief David Masirovits told the township trustees that he was attending the Ohio State School Safety Summit, which the Ohio Department of Education put on Aug. 2-4 in Columbus.
“It prepares first responders, school administrators, teachers and whatnot for emergencies that can occur in school,” Masirovits said July 25.
Gibson said no one from the school attended the summit, because it conflicted with the Trumbull County Educational Service Center Administrative Conference.
“Dave said he was going, he’ll share some things when we meet in a couple of weeks,” Gibson said. “I try to meet regularly with (Police Chief) Dan (Faustino) and Dave to review or discuss protocols, etc. with the school and safety personnel.”