What's Next For The Marjory Stoneman Douglas Safety Commission

Aug 15, 2019

 

More than a year and a half after the tragedy in Parkland, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Public Safety Commission is still putting together recommendations to increase school security.

 


Over two days, commissioners heard from leaders in law enforcement and public schools to  gather information for their second report of recommendations. 

 

"My thought on where we go is there’s so much that’s been done, there's so much that’s in progress that we focus on a report and then we pick a time and meet again," said Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri, who chairs the commission.

 

He said the second report could address several topics such as how families are notified after a mass casualty, how schools report behavioral issues, and how state agencies share data. 

The commission, he said, may recommend 100% sustained compliance with all the provisions by a date certain or there be sanctions imposed for noncompliance. About a third of charter schools in Broward County are still struggling to comply with a state law that requires an armed safe schools officer on every public school campus. There are 29 schools that have not proven to the district that they have long-term security coverage plans, that last past the coming weeks.

 

Gualtieri also suggested the commission will take a stance on controversial monthly active shooter drills. 

 

"There are divergent views and I do suggest that this commission should take some action on it and either support the status quo of the monthly drills or to modify that," he said. "I think people are looking to us for a recommendation and we would be remiss if we didn’t address that issue."

 

Their first report, 400 plus pages in length influenced state law on new emergency protocols in schools when it was released in January. It highlighted what went wrong on February 14 of last year and provided recommendations for new technology and school hardening measures. It also created statewide Code Red and emergency policies.

The commission plans to review a draft of its second report at its meeting in October.