Worcester County Public Schools Beef up School Security - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Worcester County Public Schools Beef up School Security

Posted: Mar 23, 2018 1:39 PM Updated:

BERLIN, Md. - Twenty-six young children and staff members killed at Sandy Hook Elementary back in 2012. And just last month, 17 more dead after a shooting in a Parkland, Florida high school.

And most recently, an armed student opening fire at a high school in Saint Mary's County in Maryland. 

For students like Michael Mareno, they're all images that are impossible to forget.

"We are scared, and that's the thing. We don't want to be coming to school in fear," said Mareno.

It's the reason why Michael and about 40 other classmates at Stephen Decatur High School in Berlin met with school leaders last week to discuss ways to enhance school safety measures.

"It was beneficial because we started a dialogue between the two of us and we showed our concerns and they showed us theirs," said Mareno.

Opening a line of communication with district officials like Assistant Superintendent and Public Schools Safety Director Steve Price.

He says that collaboration is necessary.

"One of the things we have talked about and the students brought to the table also was to ensure that there's a friendly and safe environment here that they can reach out to their peers and if there's a peer here that feels alienated or not part of the team, they can come forward and help us make sure those children are made safe," said Price.

That meeting is just one of many efforts the school district is leading to keep students safe. One of the school district's plans includes installing bollards or concrete pillars in front of Stephen Decatur High School.

"Across the country and across the world, one of the means of attack has been vehicles, large vehicles causing harm to civilians," said Price.

Over at Pocomoke High School, leaders are discussing a program that would equip the building with 30 emergency response shields.

Initiatives by school leaders that Michael is proud to see.

"I've been going to schools here fourteen years and I just know that these are people who listen and care," said Mareno.

And initiatives that hopefully will keep the next generations of Seahawks safe long after Michael graduates this spring.

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