School Safety Procedures Become Top Priority

Concerns about heightened school safety have developed dramatically in recent years. High-profile occurrences, such as the tragic school shooting at Uvalde Elementary, have received more attention than ever before. Magnolia High School is committed to its motto “Love, Serve, and Care,” which they display by providing the safest environment possible for students.

Mr. John Owens, the class of 2024’s Assistant Principal, is our dedicated “go-to” individual for school safety concerns, as it is a significant part of his job here at Magnolia. We recently met with Mr. Owens in order to address some common student concerns and issues, and to find out what some of the biggest changes are this year. 

We asked him why classroom doors must be shut during school hours, and why all students must be holding a pass to leave a classroom. “These methods were advised to us by a professional third-party security company that trains schools on their safety plans,” Owens said. “The fundamental aim for these guidelines is to ensure that, in a safety event, the AP’s can get an accurate headcount of students and that everyone is accounted for.”

Magnolia High School also has deputy constables (SROs) that are already implanted, so there will be great coordination with local first responders in the event of an incident. These officers are directed by Mr. Owens, who is in constant contact with them. Our officers are on campus anytime students are present, including before and after school and during all sporting activities. 

Our staff is dedicated to keeping our students safe, in fact, Mr. Owens stated that Magnolia HS has the best school safety out of any school he has ever worked at. Our faculty and staff are required to participate in school safety training before the school year (professional development), any time there are new changes, during monthly drills, and in a debriefing that occurs after all drills. 

Lastly, we asked Mr. Owens what students should be more aware of when it comes to school safety. “It is important that students are aware of surroundings, and have a plan to follow in the case of any danger. We urge our students to understand drill procedures, and ask themselves ‘am I somewhere where I don’t belong?’ Lastly, I recommend that they always work with adults, we all have a common goal, and we’re all working together here. That’s the key part because this is a great place, and I think we all care and look out for one another.”