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School Security: Committed to Excellence

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School Security: Committed to Excellence

Shandi Thomas and Nathaniel Ziegenbein

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Academics aren’t the only thing Rhinelander High School (RHS) is committed to. When it comes to school security, RHS is always prepared and ready with the best security for students and staff. When people hear about school shootings, they never think it’ll be their school. But, it is necessary to have a stable safety plan in place, just to expect for the worst, as you would for severe weather.

Principal David Ditzler would definitely agree.

“We will, we are going to spend time planning and practicing for something that I hope never happens. Be it a fire, a tornado, be it whatever. We will spend time planning for how to respond to those.” Mr. Ditzler stated.

Before moving up to the Northwoods,  Ditzler was the assistant principal at New Kent High in Virginia. He was still employed there during the 1999 massacre in Littleton, Colorado, where 12 students were killed, along with one teacher.
There were drastic changes that next year, all the way in Virginia.

“I remember things changed that year following” Ditzler stated. “We had fire drill procedures, we might have had bomb threat procedures, and called it good (Prior to the shooting in Colorado). But then we started working with community or county repose staff and then when I moved here, I got to know Oneida county emergency response staff.. And now we have 3-ring binders of plans.”

Ditzler isn’t the only one who deals with the thoughts of school security and how to handle breeches, planning, and just day to day security. The RHS Liaison, Gary Gardener, also has to deal with these realities, not just in a power position, but as an officer as well.

 

“I think security is already taken very seriously, I don’t think Las Vegas is gonna make us take it even more seriously.”Officer Gardner stated.

 

Conflict between students is always a problem at any school, and is handled differently from location to location.

 

“I like them to solve it themselves if at all possible. I like to be like a mediator; where I kinda act as a go between. I like to let people think their problems out, and come to a conclusion, or come to something that they both agree on. It  teaches them.” Gardner states.  “That’s a lesson you have to learn in life. You are going to have to negotiate, and you might have to give up something and they might have to get something for you both to get something in return.”

 

School dances and major events are where the school takes more precautions, and letting students know that they will be safe at these events is crucial to a thriving social school. Security may change a bit, but nothing major that the students would  notice anything .

Even though there is a lot of question over school security, especially after the popularized school shootings and attacks,  the students and staff can rest easy knowing they will always be safe behind the doors of Rhinelander High.

 

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