School board considering part-time safety training coordinator

By Chrysta Carroll -

ELIZABETHTOWN — The Bladen County Board of Education will be considering the hire of a part-time training coordinator to handle safety issues at local schools.

The proposal, brought to the board by Capt. Jeff Singletary of the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office, proposed the board approve funding for a joint effort by the Sheriff’s Office and the Board of Education.

The need has arisen, Singletary said, by changes at the state level mandating all schools to conduct annual safety exercises, and he stated that more changes are coming that will require annual training for schools to prevent and prepare for security issues that may arise.

“We really want to stay ahead of the game on this,” Singletary said.

Singletary said Gary Turlington, who works for the Sheriff’s Office in a security training position, would be working in the proposed position. Turlington was trained under the person who investigated the Columbine High School shooting and has taught security at the federal level on behalf of ATF.

“He’s a real asset and we’re lucky to have him,” Singletary said. “We’re seeing a lot more officers at different times at the schools and we want to increase our presence in our schools.”

Funding was requested in the amount of $24,000. The board will be voting on the position in the March meeting.

In other action the board:

— Recognized two students from West Bladen who are Microsoft Certified.

— Spotlighted a “Panther Poem” by Clarkton School of Discovery student Don Ezzell.

— Recognized Dublin Primary School for being a state Title I Highest Performance REWARD school.

— Recognized six teachers who received CTE teacher proficiency.

— Recognized 70 Clarkton School of Discovery Junior Beta students.

— Recognized three school board members for certification by the School Board Association.

— Awarded Elizabethtown Primary School, Clarkton School of Discovery and West Bladen High School for their attendance.

—Adopted the 2016-2017 school calendar.

— Heard an update on the DPI District Reorganization Study by Supt. Robert Taylor, who reported the plan is being considered by the School Planning Division of the Department of Public Instruction. They have requested floor plans of all the schools that would be affected by the reorganization and will be conducting site visits at the impacted facilities in order to assist the school board with its decision. Taylor said that the board should hear something from the division by June.

— Adopted an updated high school handbook for the 2016-2017 school year. Changes include state-mandated course updates and CTE changes.

Chrysta Carroll can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.

By Chrysta Carroll

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