WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – Ohio County Schools spent this past summer reevaluating the safety practices and security equipment in all their buildings, and this week, evaluations are taking place to ensure that their hard work will pay off. 

Kenneth Trump is President of National School Safety and Security Services, a Cleveland-based national consulting firm specializing in school security and emergency preparedness training, assessments and services. 

He has been in this business for over 30 years and has worked on cases such as Sandy Hook and Parkland and says there are many factors into evaluating the overall safety of school. 

”Good school safety is a balance between hardware and hardware. It’s looking at the physical security with the cameras, access control, communications, but its also about people. Prevention: social, emotional, mental health support for kids to prevent incidents from occurring in the first place. Any type of security technology is only as good as the weakest human link behind it. We look at the access control on the doors, but it’s what is going on behind those doors with the relationships the kids have, the prevention measures in place, the student supports, and the awareness and training of school staff that really makes schools safe.”

Ken Trump – President of National School Safety and Security Services

Ken will be visiting every Ohio County Schools building over the course of the week looking at policies, talking with members from the central office, meeting with safety teams and building staff and looking for any disconnects. 

He spoke with Wheeling Park students to spearhead the rest of the week. 

”Some of our best conversations today have been with students who have told us that they have adults that they trust, they can go to and report something. They have confidence in their school’s administrators that safety is a priority and that they will come forward and tell somebody if they think that there is a safety concern that they have.”

Ken Trump – President of National School Safety and Security Services

The perfect school does not exist, but Ken was complimentary of Ohio County School’s investment in physical security as well as their dedication to strong mental health and social and emotional support for their students. 

”Parents should be comforted by the fact that the school district is being proactive, taking a look at having somebody come in when there’s not a crisis in Ohio County Schools saying, ‘What are we doing right, and how can we get better,’ and being willing to expose themselves to have somebody take a critical look because many school districts around the country don’t do that until after a crisis has occurred.”

Ken Trump – President of National School Safety and Security Services

In eight weeks or so, the district will be provided with a debrief and written report based upon his findings and evaluations during his time in Ohio County.