Graves County Schools administrators discuss safety measures, partnering with local emergency personnel

Graves County School District administrators recently invited leaders of local emergency services and law enforcement organizations to the district’s central office to discuss the latest trends and methods to protect students, faculty, and staff in various emergency situations.

“These meetings have taken place historically throughout the years in our district,” said Christy Puckett, director of pupil personnel in the Graves County Schools. “Our mindset has been and continues to be a proactive approach. However, in light of recent events, it is even more crucial that we continually monitor our plans and procedures as we live in a constantly changing society. Our district will continue to make safety a priority and utilize all available resources that assist us in making this happen.”

The Graves County School District created its own police department in recent years. Officers John Cavin and Jonathan Grant are sworn law enforcement officers. Each has previous experience in other police agencies. Both attended the meeting, providing insight from being inside the district’s schools on a daily basis and from their familiarity with the buildings and people who use them regularly.

“This kind of meeting brings everybody together to bounce ideas off one another,” said Major Brent Farmer of the Mayfield Police Department. He said emergency personnel learn from violent incidents that occur across the country and emergency personnel’s reactions to those incidents. “When we see what’s happening, that changes our tactics. We take those incidents and model what we want to do for our departments in getting kids and teachers out of danger quicker. There are people who conduct studies over these incidents, publish their findings, and have forums about them. That really helps, too.”

“It’s good for everyone to come together and make sure we’re all on the same page with new things that come up when something happens,” said Captain Jeremy Prince of the Graves County Sheriff’s Office. “No matter whether it’s at a city or county school, we’re going to be here to help. Mayfield City fire and police will be there to help, too.”

(photo caption)

Graves County High School assistant principal Coye Elliott, Mayfield Fire Chief and Ambulance Director Jeremy Creason, Graves County Schools nutrition services director Shelina McClain, and district director of human resources Wes Johnson listen intently during a recent school safety meeting. “It was great getting the school system and first responders together for an open discussion and planning. You hope for the best and plan for the worst,” said Creason. “We had ideas and a roundtable discussion about ways to take care of our students. That’s a priority for all of us.”

(photo by Paul Schaumburg, Graves County Schools)

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