15 June 2023
Stay informed about all the latest happenings in DPS district and my conversations with teachers, parents, students, and broader community members on issues concerning our schools.
Photo credit: from Aurora Public School District website
I couldn’t be happier upon hearing the news of DPS filling the crucial position of safety chief. In my view, the individual holding this role essentially takes charge of the day-to-day safety aspect, encompassing the well-being of our esteemed students, staff, and facilities. Undoubtedly, this appointment carries immense importance, and I am delighted to note that Mr. Cazzell’s resume and interview reflect not only his extensive experience but also his receptive mindset towards adopting a multilayered and integrated approach. I was particularly pleased to learn that his previous district, Aurora, employed a diverse range of resources and appropriate methods to ensure school safety.
As a devoted DPS parent, this development fills me with confidence that we are moving in the right direction. I firmly believe that without the active involvement of senior safety leadership, no safety plan can truly flourish.
As a security expert, it is encouraging for me to see a safety chief who recognizes the need to explore all available technologies and options to create a safe learning environment.
During an insightful interview with Chalkbeat, Mr. Cazzell shared his thoughts on the issue of students bringing guns to school. His words resonated with me deeply: “We really got to look at all of our technology, all of our options that may be beneficial to ensuring that we have a safe environment that’s conducive to learning. And that never stops. That is always going to be challenged. And we need to make sure we’re re-evaluating. This isn’t a one-and-done comprehensive safety plan for DPS. It will have to be evaluated. We’ll have to determine what’s working, what’s not working. That will be the path forward.”
It’s clear that we now have a safety leader who possesses a solid understanding of what it takes to ensure school safety. However, we must also acknowledge that the critical decisions in DPS are made by the board. Thus, we earnestly hope that the board will provide the superintendent and our newly appointed safety chief with the support and leadership necessary to elevate safety measures in DPS schools to the desired level. By doing so, we can collectively achieve our goal of establishing a safe environment where student well-being remains our top priority.
– Paul Ballenger, Candidate of DPS school board At-Large Seat