BROADALBIN - In response to the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., the Broadalbin-Perth Central School District will host a public forum to get the community's input on the district's current and future safety plan.
"What happened in Sandy Hook may have been many miles away, but it could not be closer to home," Superintendent Stephen Tomlinson said at the Board of Education's meeting Monday. "Beyond our students' education, our first priority is the safety of our students. They have to be safe in our schools."
The forum is scheduled for Jan. 9 at 6:30 p.m. in the high school auditorium.
The Leader-Herald/ Levi Pascher
Broadalbin-Perth Central?School?District Superintaendent Stephen Tomlinson talks at the Board of Education meeting Monday.
Tomlinson said the district does a great job with safety, but he expects tough decisions to be made in the coming months.
"I believe we do a good job keeping our students safe, but you can't help but change after what happened last Friday," Tomlinson said. "We are going to have to painstakingly review every decision that we make in regards to the safety and security of our buildings. I can't sit here right now and tell you what those changes will be, but I can tell you there will be changes."
Tomlinson said changes have already been made since Friday to increase safety, but wouldn't say what those changes were. He said the changes were made at no cost to the district.
However, in the future, Tomlinson said, he expects the school board will have to weigh whether it wants to spend the money necessary to make larger changes.
"Keeping the buildings secure costs money and it may be that we have to [weigh our needs and ask,] 'Do we need more teachers or do we need more security measures?'" Tomlinson said. "We will have to ask ourselves, 'Is this where we want our money spent?'"
"Any time something like this happens, we must take a look at ourselves and question what we could change to improve our own safety," board member Robert Becker said.
Reporter Levi Pascher can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.