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Cobb Schools Reinforce Security Plans

Law enforcement agencies are assisting with patrols in the aftermath of the Connecticut school shootings.

Cobb County School District officials spent a busy weekend requesting law enforcement assistance and briefing school principals, teachers and staff about security measures in the wake of Friday's deadly school shootings in Newtown, Conn.

On Monday, Cobb County police and law enforcement from other Cobb cities were making safety rounds at schools.

"Our precinct patrol officers are driving by all schools in their assigned beats," Cobb Police Department Spokesman Michael Bowman told Patch.

Cobb schools spokesman Doug Goodwin said the district has a 44-member full-time security staff that works out of high schools and middle schools but not elementary schools for "resource" reasons.

He said the extra police patrols will continue on an indefinite basis.

"We don't have a timetable, but it certainly will remain in effect for now," said Goodwin, adding that law enforcement agencies from Cobb County and various municipalities are providing "full cooperation."

Cobb schools are in session through Thursday and will resume on Jan. 8 after the holiday break.

Goodwin said Cobb school officials have been updating school staff about existing security procedures. At elementary schools, for example, he said staff were making sure that electronic access control systems were in place.

"We're well-trained in how these procedures are to go forth," he said.

Various principals sent out messages over the weekend with security information and to reassure parents.

Wrote John Kelly, Sprayberry High School principal: "We review our emergency preparedness plans and practice emergency drills on a regular basis, and the recent tragedy serves as a reminder of how important it is that we continue to do so."

Wheeler High School principal David Chiprany offered this advice:

"I still believe that there are far more good people in the world than there are bad, and that people are inherently good," he wrote. "I encourage you to focus on the good - the good people in the world and all that they do to make this world a better place. Please keep the families affected by these tragedies in your thoughts and prayers."

Chiprany concluded: "Don't miss an opportunity to reward/acknowledge the good around you."

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