Story by Sadrail Saint-Ulysse
It has become painfully clear that there is a great need for school safety and security training in this country. As my wife, Malou Saint-Ulysse, principal of Meadow View Junior Academy in Chesterfield, and I sat through the school safety and security training presentation by Thomas Gambino from the New Jersey State Department of Education, we quickly realized that every principal, teacher, substitute teacher and school staff needed the same training. So, I invited Gambino to our Spring Teachers’ In-service, so that our entire New Jersey Conference school personnel could receive the same instruction.
It has become necessary for educators to be trained in school security matters as much as it is necessary for them to learn CPR. Tammy Danitz, Early Childhood Education director at the Tranquility Adventist School, says, “I understood the urgency of the training I received and the importance of preparation and preventative measures.”
Gambino’s presentation to our educational family (pictured) was much needed, describes Anna-Gayle Hemmings, a teacher at Lake Nelson Adventist Academy in Piscataway: “It opened my eyes more to safety concerns and how every individual is responsible for the safety of the school.” Melanie Freeth, vice principal of Meadow View Junior Academy, shares, “Dr. Gambino’s message was a real wake-up call for everyone. ... The devil will use anyone whose mind is not guarded by a close relationship with the Lord. ... This is just another reason why we need to raise our children to know and love the Lord.”
Violeta Molina, a teacher at the Vine Haven Adventist School, was also grateful for the training: “It doesn’t matter if we are a small school or a private school. At any time, we can be faced with a situation like this, and we need to be prepared. Caring for those simple details can definitely save our students’ lives.” Furthermore, Ruth Nino, principal of Waldwick Adventist School, comments, “Safety is our number one priority, and I pray that God continues to keep us in His safe keeping.”