Barry Williams, superintendent of Gates County Public Schools, in Gatesville, N.C., has taken extraordinary ownership to school safety. This is evidenced by the professional and personal time he dedicates to ensuring the district’s safety plan remains a working document—with leadership leading and owning the work.
GCPS has set school safety and security as its highest priority. Thus, the district’s present practice around safety can serve as a model for other districts to follow regarding plan sharing, community buy-in and support, student safety expectations, and setting priorities with security upgrades.
Under Williams’ leadership, the superintendent sets the tone of safety as the Gates County executive officer prioritizes safety partners as a priority within the work. Gates County is an exemplar of multiple levels of public safety that are embraced by the superintendent.
If a school leader would like additional information on the Gates County safety success plan, please contact the AASA safety line at 571-480-0313.
Dr. Joseph Erardi
AASA Safety Consultant