Lapeer County Tea Party

Keeping the grass roots growing!!

Chatfield School bolsters security with armed guard (From the Jan 13th County Press)

Thirty-two year retired sheriff ’s deputy in charge
BY PHIL FOLEY 810-452-2616 • pfoley@mihomepaper.com

 Chatfield School co-directors Matt Young and Bill Kraly look over Clark Arnold’s shoulder as he sits at the security station at the school’s entrance. The charter school academy recently hired the 32-year sheriff’s department veteran as the county’s first armed school security officer. Photo by Phil Foley Chatfield School co-directors Matt Young and Bill Kraly look over Clark Arnold’s shoulder as he sits at the security station at the school’s entrance. The charter school academy recently hired the 32-year sheriff’s department veteran as the county’s first armed school security officer. Photo by Phil Foley LAPEER — Except for the white card emblazoned with the word “Security” taped to the back of his laptop computer, a visitor to Chatfield School might mistake Clark Arnold for a smiling, kindly grandfather waiting for one of its nearly 500 students.

The microphone clipped to his lapel suggests that he is not.

Arnold, a 32-year veteran of the Lapeer County Sheriff’s Dept., as well as a firearms instructor, has been hired by the 16-year-old charter school academy as the county’s first armed school security officer.

The move came after the mass shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., last month that left 28 people, including the shooter dead.

On Thursday, a 16-year-old student who blasted a California high school classroom with a shotgun was targeting two classmates because he felt he’d been bullied, the local sheriff said.

One student was hit and was in critical but stable condition Thursday night, and the shooter was in custody after a teacher and the school’s campus supervisor talked him into putting his shotgun down.

In the wake of the Dec. 14 incident Chatfield, along with all the other public and private schools in the county, closed its doors early for Christmas break after a series of incidents in surrounding school districts and a wave of Internet ramblings about the Mayan calendar predictions of the end of the world ramped up anxiety among students and parents throughout the county.

Following the school closures, administrators met with law enforcement officials at the Lapeer County Intermediate School District’s Education and Technology Center in Attica Township to discuss security concerns. Later Chatfield’s co-directors Bill Kraly and Matt Young had Lapeer County Sheriff Ron Kalanquin and Lapeer Police Chief Todd Alexander tour their school and make security suggestions.

Kraly said while it was important to increase security measures at the school, it was also important to maintain as much as possible Chatfield’s open, welcoming atmosphere. “In order to learn, children need to feel safe,” said Young.

Bruce Cady, a trustee on the Chatfield Board of Directors, added, “Absolutely. The decision was made for the good of the kids. We took the wellbeing of the kids and their safety into consideration. The events that have been happening in the schools is very concerning and that’s why we took the action we did.”

Among the alternatives school administrators considered were parent volunteers and locking the front door.

Following the 1999 Columbine High School shootings in which two students shot and killed 13 people and wounded 23 others before taking their own lives, Chatfield, like most schools went to a single-point entry during school hours. The school also instituted lock-down drills.

Young said each successive school tragedy has prompted school officials to review and revise security measures at the school.

After touring the school, Kalanquin suggested they bring in Arnold, who had 13 years experience providing security at the Lapeer County Courthouse behind him. Kraly said he and Young met with Arnold and decided he was “the right fit.”

Along with bringing Arnold in, the school has increased the number of security cameras and monitors in place and added other security measures. “Some measures you will never see,” said Kraly.

So far, the men said, parents’ reaction to the new security measures have been favorable. “You can’t put a price on children’s’ safety,” said Young.

“I feel safe taking my child to school knowing that there is a professional with a long history of serving the Lapeer community protecting and monitoring my child and all the other innocent children at Chatfield School,” said one mother, who wished to remain anonymous. “Not only will it help with prevention of possible attacks on the children but it could also impact bullying, illegal substance use, and perhaps altercations between students. His presence also puts a positive view on police officers to this generation that is growing up in a crime-stricken world.”

Some parents, however, had fears that the spectacle of having an armed guard might entice someone who was perhaps mentally ill to target that specific school.

Young and Kraly were reluctant to get into specifics, but they said the school has spent under $15,000 on all of its new security measures.

One staff member who also wished to remain anonymous said she thought the armed guard is “excessive, especially when funds are continuously being cut for educational purposes, but now we are able to find funds for security purposes.”

That staffer, however, said Arnold is “very friendly and has immediately blended right in at Chatfield. I don’t think the children feel they are being guarded.”

Arnold, who describes himself as “a people person” said he’s enjoying working with students, staff and parents.

Sitting at a small table next to the main office, he politely asks everyone who enters they building why they are there. He keeps an eye on the security camera monitor and periodically checks the school grounds.

Kraly and Young are now looking for another retired police officer to fill in as a substitute when needed.

Views: 390

Tags: Control, County, Gun, Lapeer

Comment

You need to be a member of Lapeer County Tea Party to add comments!

Join Lapeer County Tea Party

Members

Latest Activity

William Gavette posted blog posts
Aug 12
William Gavette posted a blog post

Dryden man seeks congressional seat (From 7-19-2015 County Press)

                     BY ALEX PETRIE810-452-2609 • apetrie@mihomepaper.com  Paul Mitchell DRYDEN TWP. — He refers to the past, not as a goal or a destination, or something to which we should return, but as a measuring stick, a series of markers.The past is something one must study in…See More
Jul 19
Myra Bray is now a member of Lapeer County Tea Party
Jul 18
Tim Lintz posted a blog post

controversy surrounding the confederate flag: by Will

There has been a lot of recent controversy surrounding the confederate flag. We are in the process of removing it from all public display, use, sale, and possession.I must point out that this fervent activity is about much more than removing this one symbol from public life. This is merely the opening pretext that will be used by radical historical revisionists for removing other symbols of our American history and culture.There are now calls for the cleansing of the American flag from our…See More
Jul 17
William Gavette posted a blog post

Editorial - Lapeer Schools finishing a fine ‘first’ year (From 5-31 Lapeer County Press)

 With the school year winding down to just a few days, we want to salute the more than 500 graduating seniors of the “new” Lapeer High School. Congratulations grads on completing your high school career, and for your successful part in Lapeer’s return to a single high school for the first time in 37 years.We also want to salute Lapeer’s school board, administration, teachers, staff and the rest of the student body for showing our community that the challenge of change can be met with a positive…See More
May 31
William Gavette posted a blog post

Memorial Day Events. ( From the 5-25-County Press)

Memorial DayParade, ceremonies to honor those who gave allBY PHIL FOLEY810-452-2616 • pfoley@mihomepaper.comLAPEER COUNTY — For many people Memorial Day marks the beginning of summer. It’s a time to put the boat in the water, fire up the grill and have fun with the family.There are those, however, who know what it really means. Originally established as Decoration Day, a day to decorate the graves of Civil War dead, it has evolved into Memorial Day, a day to remember all who’ve fallen in the…See More
May 25
Tim Lintz posted a blog post

MAY TEA PARTY MEETING SUMMARY by Tim Lintz

MAY TEA PARTY MEETING SUMMARY As you may expect the big news this month was the resounding defeat of the increase in the sales tax from 6% to 7%.    May I say thank you to all those who took the time to vote.  When we work together good things can happen.At the May Lapeer Tea Party meeting people’s concerns about fracking in our state was heard and discussed.  As you may know fracking is a form of extracting oil and gas from the areas in the earth that have been too hard to reach in the past. …See More
May 10
Tim Lintz posted blog posts
May 1
William Gavette posted a blog post

Wandrie on short list for Grosse Pointe job - (From the 4-19 County Press)

       Wandrie on short list for Grosse Pointe jobBY JEFF HOGAN810-452-2640 • Jhogan@mihomepaper.com   Matt Wandrie LAPEER — Matt Wandrie, superintendent of Lapeer Community Schools (LCS) since July 2011, is one of three finalists who will interview Monday evening to lead the Grosse Pointe Public…See More
Apr 19
D. Wayne Van Sickle is now a member of Lapeer County Tea Party
Apr 19
Tim Lintz posted a blog post

LAPEER TEA PARTY MEETING SUMMARY by Tim Lintz

LAPEER TEA PARTY MEETING SUMMARYOn April 7, 2015 the Lapeer County Tea Party held its monthly meeting at 7:00 PM at Maple Grove Church on Maple Grove Road in Lapeer. It was an exciting meeting with two guest speakers, State Senator Phil Pavlov and State Rep. from the 82 District Todd Courser. Both men spoke before an audience of over 80 people. They each talked about what was going on in their area of government (Senate & House). They spoke about their personal position on issues coming to…See More
Apr 17
David Edward Bloch posted a blog post

State Rankings for Services Received vs. Taxes Paid - Michigan is 46th.

The Blaze.com has an article ranking states according to the value of services received vs. the taxes paid.  Michigan ranked 46th, meaning there are only four states that are worse than Michigan.  If Proposal 1 passes, Michigan will probably have the disgraceful stigma of being the worst state in the nation for services rendered vs. taxes paid.  Below is a link to the article:…See More
Apr 14
William Gavette posted a blog post

Officials to draft ballot language for road millage (From the 4-8 County Press)

BY JEFF HOGAN810-452-2640 • jhogan@mihomepaper.comDale KerbysonLAPEER — Lapeer Clerk Donna Cronce was given the green light Monday evening by the Lapeer City Commission to begin to draft ballot language should the city decide at a later date to run a city-wide road millage next November.The Lapeer…See More
Apr 11
Tim Lintz posted a blog post

MICHIGAN IS TAXED ENOUGHT by Carol Brown

March 31, 2015 Michigan is Taxed Enough AlreadyThe television advertisements make it sound like Michigan Ballot Prop 1 is Michigan’s last chance to fix our roads. It uses dishonest language to deceive us into thinking the gas tax will be eliminated. It does not say it will be replaced with a higher wholesale tax that Concerned Taxpayers of Michigan estimate will raise gas prices by about 10 cents a gallon, raise state sales tax to 7%, raise vehicle registration taxes and increase our federal…See More
Apr 8
William Gavette posted a blog post

LCBT warns about robocall debit card fraud (From the 4-1-2015 County Press)

LAPEER — Lapeer County Bank & Trust is warning both their customers and the general public about fraudulent “robocalls” being made to Lapeer-area residents saying their debit cards have been compromised and asking for debit card information.LCBT is aware of “hundreds and perhaps thousands” of automated calls that were made to Lapeer-area residents in the evening hours on Monday. The bank has posted the following information on their website under the heading Debit Card Fraud Calls:“LCBT…See More
Apr 1
William Gavette posted a blog post

Here’s what you missed! Meeting Recap from Director Tim Lintz (from 3-8-2015 County Press)

Last month our letter invited everyone, regardless of political doctrine, to come to our March 3rd meeting to see what our meetings are all about. Our meetings try to keep everyone informed about things happening in our government that may impact all of us.We bring in experts on matters to give you the facts. You’ll hear the pros and cons of the matter and then you can make up your own mind on how to proceed on the issue. You can ask the experts questions to thoroughly understand the issue. Our…See More
Mar 8

© 2015   Created by William Gavette.   Powered by

Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service