Bedford County Public Schools provides safety updates for new school year

Published: Aug. 13, 2023 at 6:05 PM EDT
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BEDFORD CO., Va. (WDBJ) - Bedford County Public Schools students return for the first day of school Monday. The school board discussed safety updates for the 2023 to 2024 school year.

All schools in Virginia are required to complete a School Safety Audit. Last year, BCPS spent around half a million dollars on safety and security projects.

“Safety is a responsibility of our entire school community,” says Josh Cornett, Executive Director of School Administration.

Cornett listed a breakdown of the new safety measures.

All schools will have designated threat assessment teams.

“Threat assessment teams provide schools with an evidence-based approach for assessing and classifying threats,” says Cornett.

He says staff members will receive regular safety training.

“Staff are trained on both emergency management platforms as well as emergency operations plans for their schools,” added Cornett. ”Principals receive routine safety training and updates. They train their staff on safety procedures throughout the year.”

All secondary schools will have a new reporting app. STOPit anonymously allows students to report bullying directly to the school administration.

Last year, Bedford County’s Sheriff’s Office received a grant to hire 14 more school resource officers.

“I am proud to say that we only have four more positions to fill. And our schools will have a school resource officer in every school,” says Sheriff Mike Miller.

Sheriff Miller says the only way to have a future is to keep the next generation safe.

“We know that they use those schools to learn, develop, because they are going to be the next generation that will be leading not only this county but also this country,” added Sheriff Miller.

For more information on BCPS School safety, click here.