Superintendent's Corner-Feb/Mar 2020
Hello Baby Rattlers!
I hope this communique finds you well as we are moving full speed ahead into our spring semester. As I mentioned in the January letter, we will be embarking into testing season which may be an understandably a stressful event for our students. Let’s all ensure our students understand and we encourage them to perform their best on all tests and understand this is not the final defining moment for them, but rather a snapshot of their leaning.
This letter also serves to provide a few student-safety updates. Student safety is our first priority at FAMU DRS. First, we will be conducting safety drills, as mandated by the state of Florida. This will help us better prepare in the event of an actual emergency. Please note, safety preventive measures do not prevent issues from occurring, but they do, however, help us plan and prepare for emergencies should they arise.
Our district, the FAMU police department, and others are committed to ensuring our facilities are secure and our students and staff are protected. We have taken many steps to improve and upgrade our safety practices, programs and procedures.
On behalf of district leadership and with the support of Dean Allyson Watson, Ph.D., the following procedures have been implemented to prevent security breaches and to deter incidents of violence in our schools:
- A full-time School Resource Officer (SRO), Officer King, from the FAMU police department has been assigned to our campus. There are two security officers now monitoring our schools throughout the entire academic day. Officer King and/or another member of FAMU police is present at our evening events. All assigned officers collaborate with various school leaders and staff.
- Our district’s comprehensive safety plans and security plans are being updated as needed to meet or exceed state mandates.
- Security and school personnel are present before and after school to ensure smooth transitions before and after school.
- We have a new sign-in process in our front office and visitors are required to have their photo taken when visiting our campus. All campus visitors must present valid identification, and unverified visitors will not be granted access to the campus. There will be no exceptions to this policy.
- Entrance to our campus is controlled electronically within the district offices.
- All schools practice fire and security drills. Security drills include lockdown, shelter-in-place, active shooter and evacuation.
- We have updated our camera systems and our campus is under daily, 24-hour surveillance.
- Administration and staff participate in yearly trainings to stay abreast and informed of our policies and procedures.
FAMU DRS has numerous programs and practices in place to ensure students’ safety. The partnership between school, home and the community are essential to providing a secure environment. We encourage the DRS family to remain vigilant and report any inappropriate social media content or online interaction to school personnel. The most minute and mundane issues have the potential to negatively impact the well-being of our schools, students and faculty and staff. Therefore, we must work together to ensure the best outcome for our DRS family.
Micheal D. Johnson
Micheal D. Johnson, Superintendent
Florida A&M University
Developmental Research School