Gloucester Township Mayor David Mayer sent the following letter about the Newtown, CT, shooting to the community via email on Sunday:
Dear Gloucester Township Neighbor,
I am sure that you are as shocked and saddened by the unspeakable tragedy that occurred in the community of Newtown, CT, just this past Friday. Soon after learning of the tragedy, I immediately spoke with Gloucester Township Public Schools Superintendent John Bilodeau, Black Horse Pike Regional School Superintendent John Golden, members of Gloucester Township Council and Gloucester Township Police Chief Harry Earle.
My conversations with the superintendents and our chief of police have focused on our collective commitment to ensuring the safety of our students, teachers and parents at every school in our community. Fortunately, our police department, in cooperation with our schools, has been planning and preparing for well over 10 years on how to respond to a violent school event. The type of planning and training undertaken by law enforcement and schools throughout our country undoubtedly helped save lives this past Friday in Newtown.
The Gloucester Township Police Department regularly participates in training and emergency drills at our schools. It is this type of partnership that helps ensure the safety of our children. My discussions with the leaders of our community, including our Township Council, educational leaders, and chief of police, have all resulted in a clear understanding that collectively we will continue to work together and develop even more programs, initiatives, and strategies to make our schools even safer. I assure you that these discussions involving the safety of our children will continue in the coming days, weeks, and months. As community leaders it is critical that we have ongoing roundtable dialogue to ensure that we work together to ensure our schools are safe and to ensure that parents and their children feel safe.
Chief Earle has assured me that he has directed additional and enhanced patrols for our schools. Although the threat of violence at one of schools is incredibly low, it is so important that all of our community members are comfortable tomorrow when they kiss their children goodbye and send them to school.
I offer my thoughts and prayers for all of the victims and the entire community of Newtown, CT.
Mayor David Mayer
Tell us: Do you want Gloucester Township schools to do anything in particular to prepare for an emergency?