Police Officer Torres recently dropped by Schechter Manhattan to chat. He is the youth office for the 24th Precinct and he comes by school every couple of weeks, to check in and make sure everyone is safe. PO Torres asked me how the school year had started and reminded me to be in touch with him any time. It is great to have such a positive relationship with the NYPD, with the 24th precinct being only a short block away, and to know that they are looking out for our school community.
At Schechter Manhattan, our students’ safety at school is our highest priority. We follow the guidance of security experts to review and maintain the security of the school building. In addition to our good relationship with the NYPD, we work closely with our security firm, Security USA, to revise and update security systems and protocols on a regular basis. We also consult with a protective security adviser from the United States Department of Homeland Security, who has visited Schechter Manhattan, reviewed all of our emergency protocols, and told us that we have appropriate security measures in place to keep our school safe. We remain diligent about the upkeep and practice of those systems and reviewed all of them with the school faculty and staff before the school year began. As part of our safety plan we run 12 safety drills over the course of each school year, including lockdown drills, which are designed for active shooter scenarios.
As visitors to Schechter Manhattan have seen, a security guard is stationed in the lobby to supervise the arrival and departure of visitors in the building. All visitors are required to sign in before entering the school and visitors may be asked to show a picture ID. We are pleased that Walter is back for another year as our security guard and we thank you for cooperating with the entry protocols when you visit.
We are also careful about student safety when they are out of the school building. Teachers follow safety protocols for traveling to and from Central Park, including bringing a first aid bag that has medical information about all students in case of emergency. PO Torres has also agreed to come speak with our Middle School students about how they can be safe in their travels to and from school.
Thankfully these security measures have been only preventative and our students and staff have been safe from harm. I pray that our diligence with security will continue to keep us safe and that PO Torres’s regular visits will continue to be just to chat and check in.