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Safety and Security
Union Public Schools believes in the importance of keeping students safe and secure, whether they are in a classroom, an extracurricular activity or even traveling between school and home. Not only is keeping students safe and secure important, it is a priority.
Union has in place an initiative to manage and consolidate the Union School district’s security and prevention services providing the opportunity to explicitly address security, orderliness, and caring in our schools.
Video by the Tulsa World, featuring High School Security Coordinator Nathan Pittman
Utilizing the principles of progressive collaborative community engagement, problem-solving, conflict resolution, and peace building, Union is creating the necessary processes and providing the technical assistance to bring together Union school stakeholders to support them in assessing their needs and strengthening their capacity to leverage all available resources to develop and sustain peaceable schools.
In fact, Union wants its students to be safe even when they are at home, providing programs on fire safety, bad weather, and avoiding illegal drugs and alcohol.
Each year, administrators review emergency procedures, security concerns, and safety precautions for its students, families and staff.
A safe and secure school environment is essential to the learning process. An important ingredient in achieving safe and secure schools remains alert eyes and ears. Safety is achieved when an atmosphere exists in which students are comfortable talking with adults about their concerns.
SafeSchools Alert is our district's tip reporting service. If you have information about a threat to our safety, do your part and report it. And remember, you can remain anonymous.
A new computerized security check-in system that identifies registered sex offenders from across the nation is installed at all Union schools. The decision is the result of recent changes in Oklahoma sex offender laws.
Union implemented the system districtwide as part of an overall plan to make school entryways more secure. The system is employee-run software and provides a consistent way to track visitors and volunteers while alerting us to people who might present a danger to students and staff members.
According to state statute Title 57, section 582, sex offenders are prohibited from being within 300 feet of schools, licensed child-care facilities, playgrounds and parks. The only exceptions are when sex offenders are "enrolling, delivering or retrieving" their children from school, the law states.
Under state laws, sex offenders cannot visit schools for any other reason, including volunteering, attending a sporting event, or providing assistance at an extracurricular activity.
In order to gain access to a school site, the following steps occur:
- A visitor must present a state-issued photo ID to the school receptionist.
- The receptionist will enter the ID into a software program that scans the visitor’s name, date of birth and photo for comparison with a national database of registered sex offenders. No additional visitor data will be gathered and no data will be shared with any outside company or organization.
- Once cleared, visitors are issued an individual visitor’s badge, which they should wear in a visible place throughout their stay.
- Badges should be returned to the office at the end of the visit when the visitor checks out.
The superintendent meets regularly with principals and law enforcement officials to discuss and plan for security concerns, such as updating its emergency procedures which contains protocols on everything from an approaching tornado to an intruder on campus. In addition to personnel, Union has invested in security systems, including cameras to help safeguard school sites.
Personnel travel around the district to oversee training and drills for both students and staff at all sites including the Education Service Center. While plans differ slightly at each school site – due mainly to differences in building designs – principals have stepped up efforts to raise awareness of safety. Officers work directly with students, parents, teachers and staff in assisting with education, prevention, and intervention projects.
Union also works with students through a variety of programs administered through the Student Assistance Program.