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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

Letter to the Editor
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Hazards, liability issues concern school officials

A crumpled rug, a wobbly chair and an open cupboard door – all these seemingly innocent objects prove potential hazards everyday, in schools across the nation. When left unattended, these items may become accidents waiting to happen.

According to vice principal Jon Endicott, safety is a concern for many in school administration. Fixing broken doors, repairing the staircases around campus and making other improvements are a part of the continual process to ensure the safety of students and faculty.

“Many things have been broken or need updating around campus, ” Endicott said. “Peoples Church and the custodians are always quick to identify and respond to the problems for the students’ safety.”

Since the beginning of the year, the stairs on campus have arguably been a hazard for students. Students crowd the stairways between periods, pushing past their peers to their next class. These congested areas plus damaged steps are a recipe for injury and disaster.

“I’ve fallen down the stairs before by my own klutziness,” Brandon Cain, ’06, said. “But I caught myself so I didn’t get hurt when I fell.”

Crumpled rugs provide other potential hazards around campus. After Feather staff questioned campus janitors concerning open-seemed carpets, Peoples Church custodians repaired the carpet in the computer lab to prevent students from tripping over the frayed joints.

“If a student walks over crumpled, frayed rugs, they might trip and fall and it is possible that they could sue the church and school,” Jorge “George” Solis, custodian, said. “The safety issue is very important. Every time I see something like that I report it right away. People from the church and school also tell me about things like that so I can fix them quickly.”

Not all accidents spawn from crowded stairways or crumpled rugs, however. Endicott encourages students to take responsibility to minimize accidents by keeping backpacks out of classroom aisles, not leaning back in chairs and not sitting in hallways with their legs sprawled out in the walkway.

“I’ve stumbled over people in the halls before and nearly shoved someone into the lockers during my fall,” Ben Daniels, ’04, said. “I was pretty annoyed because the person I tripped over was just sitting in the hallway talking.”

Many improvements around campus, like removing the television carts from the classrooms and mounting the televisions on the ceiling, have been initiated for students’ safety.

“The carts did have a tendency to tip over and the wheels locked,”” Gary Schultz, principal, said. “”Safety was not the only reason the TVs were moved nearer to the top of classroom walls though. We had a problem for a while when TVs and carts disappeared from classrooms. We didn’t want to pay for 20 new carts and TVs every year.

“Also the new arrangement is more convenient and effective. People can see the screens easier and no one has to move them around campus or look for them.”

Moving the televisions was not only based on the issues of convenience.

“There are other reasons the TVs were moved,” Dwight Bartel, project manager for a home theater installation company, said. “People were apparently bumping their heads on the TVs and the screen was difficult to see for students sitting at collinear points.

“I used a special drill bit for concrete brick to fasten the TV units to the wall so they wouldn’t fall. I wanted to have the jobs done right for the students’ and teachers’ safety.”

While campus officials have not had to deal with many precautions to keep the students safe, other Fresno County school administrators are concerned over the issue of student safety.

“We work very hard to keep our campus safe for the students,” Caruthers High School Principal Jim Sargent said. “All our doors are locked from the inside so if there were to be an intruder on campus, the students and teachers would be safe inside the classrooms. We also have a fenced and closed campus so it’s difficult for intruders to come onto school grounds.”

Improving the campus grounds is also an important factor for Caruthers. Along with the improved fencing around the school grounds, car drop-off areas have been altered for students’ safety.

“A large percentage of our students are bussed to school,” Principal Sargent said. “Since our campus is on a corner, we have put the bus stop on one side of the school and the parent drop-off and student parking on the opposite side. We also have installed security cameras and have a campus officer from the sheriffs’ office four days a week.”

For more information on national school safety, go to www.schoolsecurity.org.

To find out more about campus dress code or safety issues, visit the campus handbook online at www.fresnochristian.com and click on the Handbooks link or talk to Molly Sargent, dean of women at 559-297-1380.

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