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(844) 627-8267 | Info@NationalCyberSecurity

Nashville, TN police, schools discuss ways to improve student safety | #schoolsaftey

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — On Wednesday, Metro Nashville leaders gathered for the first of three meetings scheduled in June to discuss ways to keep Nashville students safer in the wake of the Covenant School shooting.

“Nashville is now among cities in the nation that has been afflicted with a mass shooting at our schools,” said councilman Jeff Syracuse.

The first public forum included representatives and leaders from the Metro Nashville Police Department, Metro Nashville Public Schools, and a representative from Catholic Diocese of Nashville to bring in the private school perspective.

During the meeting, MNPS CEO Maura Sullivan requested more funding for shatter-resistant film to help protect school windows.

“While there are few practical levels of security that can completely stop someone with a weapon of war from gaining access to our buildings, we can make it more difficult and buy some time for our staff to implement safety protocols,” Sullivan said.

MNPD school resource officer Lt. Jason Picanzo also said there is a critical need for improved radios for law enforcement.

“We started to notice there were some communication issues with our portable radios for our officers, while obviously that isn’t just an officer safety issue, but a public safety issue where they couldn’t get out to communicate when there was an issue,” Picanzo explained.

In response, Syracuse said he was going to work to craft an amendment to the Metro budget to allocate $6.5 million to address these requests.

Picanzo also addressed their problems with school resource officer vacancies. Picanzo said while some middle and high schools haven’t had a school resource officer daily, that would change this fall.

“Chief Drake has committed that by September of this year, each and every MNPS middle school and high school will be staffed with an SRO, which is what we traditionally did years ago,” he said.

(Source: Metro Nashville)

However, MNPS Director of Schools Dr. Adrienne Battle did say they are still not planning on having an armed officer in elementary schools. She said they are instead working on having an unarmed safety ambassador in elementary schools and an MNPD officer stationed outside for additional safety.

“That’s going to give us a lot of data and information around what the next phase of this work will look like,” she said of the two-pronged approach.

Syracuse also asked whether it is possible for law enforcement to have access to private schools with a universal key system similar to what exists for public schools. Picanzo said that would be difficult, considering each private school has their own security system.

The next meeting is set for Wednesday, June 21 at 6 p.m. at Hillsboro High School Auditorium.

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