The tragedy in Connecticut on Friday has left all of us shaken. I do not know of anyone that has children or that works with children that could come away from hearing about those events unchanged. Many of you have asked what Explore Knowledge Academy is and has done to ensure the safety of our students and staff. Let me first say that by being a Clark County sponsored charter school, we fall under the requirements as all Clark County School District schools to create and maintain a Crisis Response Plan. That plan is provided to all first responder entities such as the Fire Department and the Metropolitan Police Department as well as the Nevada Department of Emergency Management and Clark County School District’s Risk Management Office. Our school has always maintained a Crisis Response Plan and it is updated yearly just prior to the start of each school year. Last year, as we fully moved into our new facility, those plans underwent a thorough Crisis Response Team review to ensure that, to the best of our ability, we were providing a safe learning environment for our students. In addition, we run monthly drills with the students and first responder teams. These assist the staff in critically assessing our current safety plans and in preparing students in case of an emergency.
As many of you know, last year we installed our RAPTOR, visitor management software program that does a screening to help protect our children from sex offenders, domestic dispute offenders and other trespassers. Raptor works in conjunction with law enforcement to add an extra layer of security to keep our students safe. In addition, we have installed electronic door locks to prevent unwanted entry to our buildings or access to our students. Entering the facility can be troublesome and I have frequently heard complaints from parents about the inaccessibility of the classrooms, but hopefully, we can all agree, that a few minutes waiting for a badge is well worth it when you think of the safety of all of our students. As an additional precaution, we also ask that you notify your advisor ahead of time if you want access to your child’s classroom, even if it is for a scheduled presentation. Advisors will be providing lists of impending visitors to the front offices so that they can be cleared for entry. If your name is not on the list, the front office has been instructed to not allow your entry. We regret any inconvenience this may cause, but ask that you understand that we are working to keep all students safe within the school. By keeping in contact with your child’s advisor, you should not have any issue accessing classrooms or participating in school activities on campus.
The entire staff at EKA will continue to remain vigilant and proactive in providing a safe learning environment for all students. We thank you for putting your trust in us and bringing your children to EKA.