School use to be the one place kids could go to be safe, but that is far from the truth any more. Schools security is now a top priority for administrators. Superintendent Dr. Dennis Thompson says Rockford can't ignore the issue any longer.
Thompson said the biggest concern right now is uncontrolled access to the high schools. There have been issues recently when angered parents walked through the front doors and went directly to classrooms, totally bypassing the front office. Nothing serious happened but Thompson worries the next time the school might not be so lucky. Dr. Thompson says the district needs to increase security personnel at the high schools in both the short and long term.
The top reasons for expulsion in Rockford high schools have been drug offenses followed shortly by fighting. Dr. Thompson says increased security personal can help decrease these numbers. Police do frequent the schools but it is on a very loose schedule, there may be four police officers one day and none the next. Thompson would like to see two officers at every high school at all times. Furthermore he wants those two officers to be the same people day after day, allowing for a more personal interaction with students.