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MW police to work on emergency plans for response at schools

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By Mallory Bilger

MOUNT WASHINGTON — It’s a situation that no police officer ever wants to encounter: A school emergency where students lives might be in danger.

But dangerous scenarios have become a reality at schools across the country, in small and large towns alike.

Mount Washington Police Chief Tom Rosselli recognizes that his officers need to be familiar with all the city’s schools if a problem arose, so he is working to create a departmental school emergency response plan.

Rosselli shared his idea with the Mount Washington City Council in early November, saying that he and other officers need to be more familiar with school layouts and know administrators better.

“I believe that program is needed,” Rosselli told the council.

He said the effort would start by providing each officer a school response plan binder that includes photos and maps of each school within the city. He said the binders would also include a list of staff members at those schools.

Rosselli added that the department would also provide administrators with special vests so that during an emergency situation law enforcement officials and parents could identify school leaders.

He said he would like to see the binders compiled and printed within the next couple of months and is working with administrators at each school to streamline the effort.

In the future, officers might also take tours of each school so that they can better know their layouts.

Rosselli said that school resource officer Rebecca Troutman and the department’s administrative director of operations, Rodney Hockenbury, would be instrumental in implementing the school emergency response plan because of their familiarity with local school officials and buildings.