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LETTER TO FREEHOLD MAYOR REGARDING SCHOOL SAFETY

PARENTS... TAKE ACTION!!! Email our Mayor (bmcmorrow@twp.freehold.nj.us) to get Freehold Township Police Officers stationed in our schools!

To Ms. McMorrow,

My name is Laura Molfetta and I am a C. Richard Applegate School parent. Like every other parent, the crisis at Sandy Hook Elementary School has left me horrified and frightened for the safety of our children. 

While I am appreciative of the Township's preparation to prevent crises and respond to emergency situations, I feel an urgent need to know what proactive steps are being taken to protect our children. I believe that this event must serve as a wake-up call to us all. A school secretary with an intercom and buzzer is no longer an adequate security measure.
 

We need a constant police presence in our schools. 

We need metal detectors. 

We need tighter regulations on who is permitted to come in and out of our schools. 

We need these NOW. 

As you know, the Mayor of Marlboro Township has appointed a police officer to each school in his district. Every Freehold parent that I speak to is asking the same question: "Why aren't Freehold Township Police Officers protecting OUR children in OUR schools?"

Only you can make that happen.

On the morning of December 14th, parents in Newtown, Connecticut sent their children to school just like we did in Freehold, NJ. 

They packed their lunches, wished them well on their tests, told them to behave, kissed them goodbye.

That afternoon, those same parents were called to identify the remains of their precious children.

I will not sit and wait and hope that luck is on our side. Please help us protect our children. We are counting on you to make active changes to ensure student safety.

Thank you..

Sincerely,

Laura Molfetta

___________________________

**The above letter was sent to Mayor McMorrow of Freehold Township today, Jan 14, 2013. I sent a similar letter to the Superintendent of Freehold Township Schools, Dr. Ross Kasun on Dec 14. 2012.  He responded that while Freehold Township Schools "work proactively with The Freehold Township Police Department to continually improve and enhance our measures", specific emergency plans would not be shared.**

 Let Mayor McMorrow know that parents want Freehold Township Police Officers placed in our schools to protect our children!!! Her email address is: bmcmorrow@twp.freehold.nj.us

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Lisa January 15, 2013 at 07:01 PM
How much will this cost?
Claudine Scozzari January 15, 2013 at 07:51 PM
Where are the SECURITY MEASURES for the children? I don't think my property tax dollars are well spent by having a uniformed police officer stand around waiting to be shot by gunman with an automatic rifle whose primary use should be for military actions.
Jaime Story January 16, 2013 at 06:49 PM
I deleted my first comment because I saw it on the front page. I do agree we need stronger restrictions to who gets in our schools. Not sure if we need an armed guard though. I agree with Claudine on that.
Mike January 16, 2013 at 07:35 PM
Claudine and Jaime, Is there a dollar value you think would be fair? I bet any parent from Sandy Hook Elementary would give all they have to have there children back! Why would armed guards be a bad idea? Aren't our children worth it? I say do whatever you have to do to make our kids safe. Lets not forget a bigger picture here, the death of those children is HORRIBLE, but what about the childhoods lost for the children that survived? How do they go on? There lives are forever changed as well. I say take away leaf/branch pick up, take away anything from us, if thats what it takes to give a children safety at school. Raise my taxes, do what you have to, give our children a chance here! They deserve it!
Claudine Scozzari January 17, 2013 at 01:14 PM
Mike - Security and safety is not an easy question; or an easy issue to handle from a professional perspective when you have had years of on-the-job experience and "educational" training (complete with PowerPoint slides). When you are an adult who is pressed with no training in how to deal with your emotions, it must be harder. When I was in high school, the news story on the front page one day - "Syracuse students dead after the European flight was blown up." Fast forward to the year 2001, when the courts and the legal deals made behind closed doors had allowed the amount of undocumented workers into the country for the following reason: "There weren't enough Americans in the country to do the work. We need highly skilled foreign workers to the work for the Americans." Of my college graduating class, three people full of life were lost. And, the Mike I knew had an airplane land on his desk one day at work. There was a major tragedy with a loss of life; but, the adults are failing the children of the community, if the children aren't given the tools to handle the stress of everyday life. Have you been to an airport lately? Hurricane Sandy left the community without power for nine days. Did you need to get gas for your generator in those nine days because the adult in your household needed electricity? In the wake of tragedies, people have to remember there is a world out there full of live people that have lives the need to be lived.
Mike January 17, 2013 at 02:34 PM
I respectfully disagree. Security and safety in an adult world certainly is not an easy issue, in a child's world, we as adults can make it easier. Cutting back on services or even paying more in taxes is ok if a childs safety is part of it. Let me ask you this, would all those children be dead if there were armed security at that school, answer mostly likely not! I will take that everyday of the week! Knowing everyday that myself or my wife are at work, we now think in the back of our heads that our son or daughter could be at risk at school sucks. We owe our children a safe school environment, money should not be the question here. Sadly, our world has changed, and not for the better. We need to evolve our way of life to met the present threats we have in schools, malls, all over. Our children are innocent and can't defend themselves, that's our job as parents and community members.
Laura Molfetta January 17, 2013 at 05:10 PM
Thank you, everyone for your comments. Mike, I completely agree. You cannot put a price on the safety of our children. While I love all of the "extras" that our school system has to offer (extracurricular activities, outdoor classroom, enrichment programs, etc) I'd rather see that money put into paying police officers to protect our children.
Claudine Scozzari January 17, 2013 at 07:06 PM
I admit; I AM ONLY INVOLVED IN THE ADULT WORLD REALM OF THINGS. From an adult world perspective, those children would still be dead under the same circumstances for the following reason: The type of weapon used and the amount for firepower Being said, we can't bring the dead back; and on many days of the year where there are tragic circumstances, I wish that was an option. Paying police officers for their security advice and actually seeing the police officer in the school are 2 different statements. When you pay the police for their services, the accountants see the police officer as a "budgetary line item", meaning my property tax bill is paying for this police officer. Out of the mouths of ANGRY ADULTS, "Why are we paying for something I don't see." In the adult world of security, if you see the security measure, it really isn't a SECURITY MEASURE. It is back-up for when other measures fail. I don't think the adults of the community should be allowing our children to believe they are completely safe if that uniformed police officer is on the premises.
Mike January 17, 2013 at 07:31 PM
you sound to me like your taxes are more important to you then the safety of your neighbors child? I am in my 30's, work my butt off to provide for my family and barely make it. I can assure you, i would not blink,cry or anything else, if my taxes went up because my town wants to take "precautionary" measure to keep any child in my community safe. We owe that much to our children. We I was a kid, I could roam my block freely without my parents sitting outside, today they can't do that. When I was a kid, my sports coaches were volunteers from town, today we get finger printed/background checked and have to have insurance. When I was a kid, my parents dropped me off at school and they knew I was safe, today that doesn't happen. I'm not blaming anyone for these examples, just saying we need to evolve with the times. Claudine, towns spend 100 of thousands of dollars for leaf removal, brush removal or (2) bulk garbage pick ups per year,....why not do away with that and use those funds to protect are children? Are your leaves and lawn more important then my childs safety? I'm not sure if your a parent or not but your childs safety should be your number one priority, it sure as hell is mine! Maybe we should wait and (god forbid) see if it happens again, since Sandy Hook, 2 separate incidents have occurred, lucky with no deaths, lets just sit back and wait until 30, 40 or 50 innocent kids are killed, then you will blame Gov Christie!
Claudine Scozzari January 18, 2013 at 01:12 PM
I want the tax payer dollars to be spent on items that will actually make a difference, and not to spend money on security measures that will make the adults think the children are being protected. The incident in CT was a family court matter. The gun was used on the mother first; prior to the actual massacre. Family court matters go through the courts, and the judiciary department in this State and around the nation do not place a dollar amount on the tangible and intangible costs of court decisions. This is a problem in the entire court system which has effected many aspects of daily life from the public works department (sanitary sewer, clean water, garbage pick-up) to fire and police to the clerk's office. When court decisions prevent the Government from operating lawfully, there is a problem. It's not about cutting the public works department budget to remove leaf collection or halt the plowing of snow. And, in court matters, the clear delineated line between ADULT matters and school matters have been removed. And, the reactions as it pertains to security matters may have a legal affect on other industries where the teachers union should not be involved. Security and safety is a nationwide problem in many aspects of life, and any life, regardless of age, has the right to security and safety.
Mike January 18, 2013 at 03:10 PM
To me it seems if this was a senior citizen concern you would be more understanding or wanting more, because it involves children you don't seem to worried? I refuse to discuss this with you further. I respect your opinion and greatly disagree. You could call it a family court matter or whatever, the TRUTH is, and the orginal point is, a childs security is a top priority!
Claudine Scozzari January 19, 2013 at 03:38 PM
Most people who have left sheltered lives in a bubble of safety have difficulty speaking to an ICEBERG. I apologize if my harsh comments give the appearance that I am not worried. The reason for me making the comments is that I am worried about my community. I am worried about all of the community members, and the community members include children. The TRUTH OF THE MATTER was that the entire situation was a FAMILY court matter. The gunman's father and older brother were held in a Hoboken police station on the day it occurred. If this community is truly concerned with the security of children changes need to be made to how the child in a court room is handled, especially as they pertain to familty court matters. Adults have no problem using children for their own personal gain which is the reason you have to plan prior to picking up your child at school. Two survivors of the Titantic were taken from the mother in a custody battle by the father. This is just one of many historically significant instances where changes to what is accepted in society have to be made for the safety of children.
karen zuccarelli January 24, 2013 at 05:03 PM
An armed security officer in CT on that day would not have been a deterrent. An armed security officer would have been one more casualty. Has anyone thought about victims who could possibly have been caught in the crossfire that day? The Sandy Hook police did not fire a single shot that day, but a gunfight in a school can only lead to more heartbreak and tragedy.

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