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WDMCS Safety Procedures: Response to Uvalde, Texas Tragedy (05/24/22)

May 25, 2022 Update | Last night, news spread across the nation announcing a school shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. As we learned that 19 children and two teachers were killed, West Des Moines Community Schools (WDMCS) joined in shared sorrow. We also wished to communicate the ongoing safety efforts taken to protect our own students and staff. In the event of any school crisis or threat, a partnership with local law enforcement is critical to supporting school safety. 

WDMCS worked with multiple law enforcement agencies to develop a detailed safety and crisis plan. This plan addresses a variety of potential crises, including school shootings. The plan is frequently reviewed and amended through the district’s safety committee and at safety summits. In addition,  safety drills are implemented to practice response time and processes in the event of an actual crisis. You can learn more general information about our safety and emergency management plans on the WDMCS website.

WDMCS also continues to take proactive steps to enhance school security. In addition to all school buildings being locked during school hours, visitors at most of our schools go through two separate locked doors and are routed through the front office to use the Raptor Visitor Check-In System prior to gaining access to hallways and classrooms. Plans for similar additions to the two remaining secondary buildings are in the works as construction begins on both Stilwell Junior High and Valley Southwoods Freshman High School this summer.

In light of the tragedy in Uvalde, we encourage WDMCS families to talk to their students and listen to their concerns. We encourage students to tell an adult if they see something out of the ordinary on social media or in person. Students should not feel intimidated or embarrassed by sharing concerns. WDMCS is grateful for the support and partnership it has with local law enforcement, staff, families, and the broader community to help our students learn in a safe environment.  

Lisa Remy, Ed.D.
West Des Moines Community Schools