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Safety News From Ms. McLean

posted Mar 2, 2018, 3:23 PM by Butch Richards   [ updated Mar 2, 2018, 3:24 PM ]
This past week we've discussed and planned discussions about school safety in several spheres:
  • Two staff meetings were held after school on Monday, February 26 and Thursday March 1 to discuss safety protocols and share thoughts.
  • The RSU 71 Administrative Team met and discussed school safety on Monday, February 26 .
  • The RSU 71 School Board met and discussed school safety on Monday, February 26.
  • An optional Student Forum was held on Wednesday February 28 in the chorus room during lunch.  Students raised great questions and shared excellent ideas about school safety with me and with other staff who attended.
  • A meeting with scheduled with Student Senate for Monday, March 5th during lunch to discuss school safety and student plans with regard to taking action to make their school an even safer place. 
  • The weekly meeting of the BAHS Guidance/Admin Team focused on school safety and protocols.
  • A meeting with Belfast Police Chief and RSU 71 administrators was scheduled for a week from today to discuss the School Resource Officer (SRO) position.
  • BAHS will host an RSU 71 Community Forum on March 15 from 5:30 - 7:00 pm in the gymnasium.
In terms of news that I care share with you:
  • Student Resource Officer - We will continue to have an SRO at Belfast Area High School. Officer Stearns, who has been out for several months medical leave, will not be returning to Belfast's Police Department. So that position has been posted. Chief McFadden will be working closely with me and with other district administrators to reconfigure the SRO position with an even greater emphasis on school safety, drills and protocols.
  • March 14, 2018 - The instructional schedule will be slightly adjusted to allow for a school-wide break from 10:00 - 10:20 am that day. Students who wish to participate in the national walkout that day from 10:00 - 10:20 will not face any punitive consequences and will not miss instructional time. We will be providing police presence that day, blocking the roads that lead to the entrance, not in order to police the students but in order to protect them. (Concern has been expressed that because the specific time and date has been so widely publicized, this could be seen, sadly, as an opportunity on the part of individuals who would wish to do us harm.) Students will be enabled to congregate in the front of the school and take turns with a microphone to make their voices heard. The students involved with a new student organization, the Young Republicans, will be organizing a separate forum in the gymnasium at the same time for students who do wish to have their voices heard but do not wish to leave the building. The position of the school and district is neutral and respectful of all student and community perspectives vis-a-vis gun control.
  • Building and Grounds - I am working closely with our superintendent Dr. Knowles and our Director of Maintenance to ensure that all our doors and windows work safely. 
  • Drills - We have had four drills this year.  Students have asked me to ensure that in future drills we practice what we would do in the many instances of transitions, especially on A,B,C and D days where there are 18 transitions: before and after each of the 7 academic classes as well as Academic Team/Homeroom and Lunch.
Please feel free to be in touch with me with any questions, concerns, ideas or aspirations.

Sincerely and with best regards, 

Mary Alice McLean, Principal
Belfast Area High School