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Harrison County

Harrison County

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Local schools review policies in light of tragedy

Updated: Wednesday, April 9 2014, 05:29 PM EDT
HARRISON COUNTY, Ohio – From Pittsburgh through the Ohio Valley, people are talking about the unthinkable tragedy that took place at Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville, Pa.
While it's difficult to fully simulate a situation like the one that took place outside of Pittsburgh on Wednesday morning, local schools do everything they can to ensure that all bases are covered.
Policies in place are a collaborative effort between schools and law enforcement to ensure that nothing slips through the cracks.
“If you practice enough and you're familiar with your procedures enough, those procedures will kick in,” said Dana Snider, superintendent of Harrison Hills City Schools.
While the state requires an emergency plan to be in place and for schools to practice them, Snider says to ensure those procedures go as planned, officials in her buildings perform drills a minimum of three times a year.
However, the security doesn't stop with the students.
“Even our employees have (key) fobs to get in and out of the building now, so there are no doors left open or even propped (open),” Snider said.
While most of the country has focused on stricter gun policies at schools after tragedies such as Sandy Hook (Connecticut), Harrison County Sheriff Joe Meyers says that no matter how rigorous the preparation, they can't go over every scenario.
“You can prepare to the best of your ability and run all kinds of scenarios through your school and there's always going to be that one scenario that you don't run through, and that's probably going to be the one that they use because it's going to be one of two things -- the lowest on your list or the highest on your list,” Myers said.
That doesn't stop schools from trying to ensure both employees and students are safe. Snider and her staff have left no stone unturned.
“We have fenced all of our elementary areas in and even at our high school we have fencing so they can go between the gymnasium and the high school and there would be no way anyone could get into the students,” she said.
Snider also said that each building has a safety committee that regularly sweeps through the building to make safety checks looking for areas where the security can be improved.

Local schools review policies in light of tragedy

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