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Communication Issues Discussed at Lockdown Meeting in Magrath


MAGRATH: School administrators met with the RCMP Tuesday at the Magrath High School.

They discussed Mondays lockdown, which went into effect when a student left the school talking about firearms.

Principal Rod Doig stated that while they're number one priority will continue to focus on student safety, they realize that they need to improve communications with parents.

Several parents expressed frustration with the fact that once the lockdown went into effect, they couldn't contact the school to find out what was going on. Doig confirmed that under the lockdown the phones go into their night system, where they go straight to voice-mail and only provide a generic message.

Doig explained that one option they will be looking at, will be to change the message so it gives a brief explanation of what it happening at the school and the safety of the students inside.

Another concern that was raised was that teachers took students cellphones during the lockdown. Doig again confirmed that they did, but explained that it's in place to protect both parents and students.

He commented that they don't want students sending out messages to their parents with limited or incorrect information. The fear would then be that some parents would come to the school, putting them in a potentially dangerous situation.

Doig noted that the risk to students comes from the fact that they don't always know if a suspect or person of concern is working alone in the school, so they want to limit any contact students have with that person.

The last reason was one Doig admitted to just learning from the RCMP. They explained that cellphones can be used as a detonator.

Doig explained that today's meeting with the RCMP won't be the last, as they aim to improve lockdown procedures in place. He added that they would also like feedback from the community and parents, and that he would be happy to have one-on-one meetings with concerned parents.

Posted on Tuesday, March 22, 2011 at 4/23/2014 4:48:42 PM
Source: Patrick Burles-- Country 95 News
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