School Safety Discussion to be Held Wednesday Night

By: Carly Stephenson Email
By: Carly Stephenson Email

HARRISONBURG, Va. -- If your child goes to a school in the Harrisonburg city public school system, you have a chance to learn more about what's being done to keep your child safe.

The superintendent and other local leaders will be holding a school safety discussion Wednesday night at the Skyline Middle School auditorium.

Doctor Scott Kizner, the superintendent, said it's a session where parents can ask questions in person or fill out a card to be answered in a day or so.

A major part of the discussion involves a nationally known speaker, a University of Virginia professor, Doctor Dewey Cornell.

Dr. Cornell will be talking about how to stop violence in schools.

Dr. Kizner said that administrators think about safety everyday. He said he doesn't want to make any impulsive decisions about school safety.

Dr. Kizner said some things implemented in other school systems across the county may seem like a good public relations move, but may not be good for Harrisonburg.

Dr. Kizner said that one tactic to stop violence before it starts is to make sure teachers are building relationships with their students daily.

"Every morning the principals are out there shaking hands, greeting the children, knowing every child by name, knowing their siblings knowing their parents. That means a lot so if a child is having an issue, if they're aware of something, concerned about something they can then go to an adult because they see these adults as welcoming, inviting, caring people," Dr. Kizner said.

Wednesday night's forum will be held at the Skyline Middle School auditorium at 6:30 and will last until 8:15.

Dr. Kizner said the main thing right now is to keep schools as safe as they are right now.

Dr. Kizner also mentioned that Harrisonburg City School employees already follow many of the recommendations laid out by the Governor's safety task force.

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