Police: School Safety Starts with Vigilance at Home

The key to keeping schools and students safe and out of trouble is keeping an eye on their online and real-life behavior, according to the Montgomery County Department of Police Public Information Officer Captain Thomas Jordan. 

Montgomery County Public Schools are “committed to providing a safe and supportive learning environment for students and staff,” according to a message MCPS Chief Safety Officer Edward Clarke wrote for families and student before the start of 2019-2020 school year. 

With an increase in active shooting scenarios at schools across the country, it’s easy for parents to be concerned about their children’s safety. Threats, like the nonviable threats that took place at Wheaton and Thomas Edison High School yesterday, as well as criminal activity at school, like the incident that took place at Clarksburg High School on Monday, can be other causes for alarm. 

Jordan wants families to remember that MCPS has its own team of security staff who take threats and suspicious behavior seriously. Every high school in Montgomery County has it’s own School Resource Officer that works closely with students and faculty to prevent and deter any wrongdoing at school.

In the case of the five students who were arrested at Clarksburg High School in connection to robbery and possession of a gun, the school resource officer was able to successfully identify and end a potentially dangerous situation before anyone got hurt, Jordan said. 

Beyond SROs, MCPD also investigates any threat made against the school, and responds with increased officer presence. Most threats made against MCPS are not credible, and some are pranks or attempts to disrupt school activity, according to a statement written by MCPD. Even so, MCPD staffs any school that receives a threat with additional officers during drop off and pick up time as an extra precaution. 

MCPD investigates all threats and charges anyone found threatening violence on school grounds, whether or not the threat was a joke or prank.   

Keeping an eye on children and their online and offline behavior is also one of the best ways to keep schools safe and keep students out of trouble. 

Finally, parents always have the option to make their own choices and have students stay home for the day, Jordan said. That call is ultimately up to the parents, and one that they can make for their own children.

Police Respond to Nonviable Threats at Wheaton, Thomas Edison High Schools

Five Clarksburg High School Students Arrested for Robbery, Handgun Possession at School

Montgomery County Police Condemn Threats Against Schools

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About Grace Mottley

Grace Mottley was a spring 2020 intern for Montgomery Community Media. At the time, she was studying at the University of Maryland, where she is majoring in multi-platform journalism.


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