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Officials discuss school safety ahead of annual State School Security Marshal report

lockers school.jpg
Samantha Morrill

Schools' safety seems to be improving year over year in Kentucky. That’s according to State School Safety Marshal Ben Wilcox. In an interview with WEKU’s Eastern Standard, Wilcox said there was legislation passed in 2019 that took steps to address school security and mental health concerns.

“The School Safety Resiliency Act provides for both of those. They provide for that hardware of making sure that we are keeping bad people out. And that heartware of making sure that our students have that mental well-being with counselors with assistance from other mental health professional staff,” said Wilcox.

Wilcox said school safety is about more than locking doors.

“Because you can put as many police officers as you want in a school, you can lock the doors tighter than a drum. But if we're not getting good information about what's happening in kids lives, a school is not going to be safe. So the future needs to be really focused on that,” said Wilcox.

Wilcox used the Kentucky’s school safety tip line as an example of progress.

The Office of the State School Security Marshal does an annual report on safety metrics in Kentucky’s schools. Wilcox said last year’s report was positive and this year’s numbers appear to be even better.

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Samantha is WEKU's All Things Considered Host and also reports on news of interest in the commonwealth. Sam is a graduate of Morehead State University and worked for MSU's Public Radio Station WMKY.
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