School safety is top priority for EHTPD

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To the editor:

In response to the Sandy Hook murders, the men and women of the Egg Harbor Township Police Department feel an overwhelming need to demonstrate to our local teachers, school officials and students that the safety of our schools and children is our number one priority.

On Monday morning, Dec. 17, the police department manned our local schools during the drop-off and pick-up periods and conducted property checks throughout the day.  Our intent was to reassure the parents of students, and school staff that their schools are safe, and that the EHTPD will be vigilant in the protection of them. Secondly, we wanted to provide a mechanism to our police officers to show support and respect for the Connecticut first responders and to mourn the victims of this tragic event.

We are very proud of our relationship with our local schools and school officials. We annually review our safety and security policies and conduct practical “joint” training with them.

Although the township’s school resource officers (SROs) recently fell victim to budget cuts – and as a result, there are no longer uniformed police officers permanently stationed inside of the schools – I strongly believe that the school district and I share the common goal of providing the safest learning environment possible for our children, and hope to soon work in partnership with school officials to reinstate our SROs. 

On behalf of the men and women of the Egg Harbor Township Police Department, we extend our heartfelt condolences to Sandy Hook as they cope with this tragedy.

Chief Michael Morris 
Egg Harbor Township Police Department 

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