Safety issues were on the minds of members of the Olney ISD Board of Trustees when they met Monday, June 10. In light of recent situations involving tornadoes in Oklahoma and Texas, as well as violent acts at schools around the country, trustees heard a review of Olney’s policies and procedures in various situations.

Tornado safety was tackled first, and Superintendent Tom Bailey said students at each school have procedures to follow.

“Our elementary has two concrete reinforced hallways where they gather,” Bailey said. “Junior high students go to hallways, but it’s a solidly built building. High school teachers and students go to the gym.”

In the gym, students go to the weight room, which was constructed of reinforced concrete to withstand high winds and tornadic activity. Young children who attend the school’s daycare facility have a safe room built to the west of the building.


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As far as daily school   1safety, Olney ISD is patrolled by a school resource officer, who gets assistance when needed from the Olney Police Department.

“We’re very fortunate to have him, and the entire Olney Police Department is quick to respond to our needs as well,” Bailey stated.

Some recent changes have also been made to the different schools, in general, to help make them safer. The locks on classroom doors have been changed to make them easier for teachers to lock from the inside, if needed, and the entire OISD campus is watched, inside and out, by security cameras with DVR capabilities.

“From a safety standpoint, the cameras are nice,” he said.

The outside entrance doors to each campus are kept locked as much as possible during the day, and Bailey said all teachers and staff members are trained to confront visitors to the campus to find out why they are there.

(For more of this story, read this week's edition!)