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South Bend Community Schools talk student safety

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – conversations about school safety continued during South Bend Community School Corporation’s community forum at Adams High School.

“We want them to know, that we see problems in our schools that we want them to address more than just throwing it to the side and making it seem like it isn’t happening.” said Dana Taborn, a junior at Clay High School.

The candid conversations this time were led by teens.

“It wasn’t until this year and due to recent events and also Adams receiving threats that I really had to think deeply about how safe I felt,” said Adams High School senior Rebekah Amaya.

Folks over the corporation did most of the listening as the sobering reality of the tragic school shooting in Florida still weighed heavily on the district one month later.

“It’s kind of like every time you hear another fact or something that happened it’s just another punch in the gut and you start looking at your school and thinking, man that could happen here,” said Andrew Walkowski, junior at Riley High School. “You don’t’ want that to happen here for people to realize there’s an issue. So after [the Parkland shooting], there definitely was a sense of fear but also a need for change.”

That change will come in the form of district-wide extensive training and review of safety procedures throughout buildings.

But the most important resource will be having conversations like this more often.

“That’s something that we here in south bend try to do on a daily basis, keep those lines of communication open with parents, community and students,” said Jim Seitz, principal at Adams High School.

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