Security has always been a priority within the Fort Wayne Community Schools. This commitment became clearly apparent with the creation of a Security Department in 1995. The mission of the FWCS Security Department is to attempt to provide a safe learning environment for all students, staff, and visitors to our properties and events. While our teachers have the opportunity to use the best and most up to date teaching tools and philosophies, if a child does not feel safe and secure while attending school, then their ability to learn is greatly diminished.
We attempt to achieve this goal through emphasizing a collaborative approach to safety and security. We routinely provide and receive information from our local law enforcement providers, emergency responders, and fellow educators on a local, statewide, and national level. In addition we are proud to be able to state that many of the programs and initiatives that we have developed since 1995 have been copied by numerous school systems and their law enforcement partners across the country.
You can have the greatest curriculum offerings, the finest teachers, and the most outstanding facilities and resources, however, if kids don't feel safe, and their parents do not believe that you are aggressively attempting to provide a safe and secure learning environment for their children, then you will not be able to reach your full potential as a successful learning institution.
Bullying is addressed at all levels in FWCS through several programs. Bullying come in many forms - physical, emotional and cyber bullying. Visit our Bullying Prevention page to learn more about our programs and what you can do to prevent bullying.
Getting to and from school ...
What your children should know ...
- Always use the BUDDY SYSTEM
- Walk in well lit areas, never take shortcuts
- Stay with a group while waiting at the bus stop
- If someone bothers you, say NO, then GO and TELL a trusted adult
- Never accept a ride from anyone unless your parents say it's OK, even if you know the person
- If someone follows you on foot, get away as quickly as possible. If they follow you in a car, turn around and go the other way
- Never leave school with someone you don't know
Internet Safety for Young People
Keep your passwords private
- Never give out passwords to strangers or even friends. Don't share your password online, even if the request looks "official."
Protect your personal information
- Never use your first or last name in your screen name.
- Never give out your, address, phone number or other personal information.
- Be careful in chat rooms, strangers may be reading what you say
Beware of Scams
- Don't respond to official looking e-mail asking for personal information.
- Watch out for "free" offers. These are often scams to get personal information.
- Don't open an e-mail attachment unless you are expecting it or know the sender.
- Be careful about downloading programs or plug-ins from websites.
Don't trade pictures with people you don't know
- You can never be sure people are really who they say they are.
- Pictures can be forwarded on to anyone.
Don't respond to messages that make you feel uncomfortable
- These may include someone asking about your body or clothes, someone wanting to know where you live, comments about sex, or threatening messages.
- If you receive messages that make you uncomfortable or scare you, tell an adult.
Don't get together with someone you've met on the Internet
- People on the Internet can pretend to be someone they are not (and adult can pretend to be a teenager).
- If you think a person is safe and you want to meet, talk about it with your parents.
Tips for parents
- Become involved in your child's school activities- PTA or field trips, help out in your child's classroom
- Know where your children are, what they are doing and who they are with at all times
- Arrange an alternative place where your child can wait if you are delayed, especially in the darker winter evenings. Suggest a well-lit store or inside an area or school.
- Use a secret family code. Children should never go with anyone, not even close family friends, unless such friends are able to give the child the code. Once the code has been used, it should be changed.
- Don't allow young children to go to a public washroom unattended.
- Take the Party Safe Home Pledge. Click here for more information from the No Alcohol No Drugs Task Force.
Teach your child to ...
- Know their full name, address and phone number (including area code)
- Know how to make long distance telephone calls
- Know how to dial 911
- Never go near a car with a stranger in it
- Never get in a car without your permission
- Never tell someone on the phone that they are home alone
- Always lock the doors at home
- Never open the door to a stranger
- A dangerous person can be a person who pretends to be nice-big, small, old, young, a man, a woman, girl or boy
In an abduction attempt ...
DO NOT BE PASSIVE - FIGHT FOR YOUR LIFE!!
- Scream continuously and yell "this person is not my mother (or father)
- Kick the abductor in the groin area or shins, stomp on the top of the abductor's foot
- Rotate arms forward quickly making circles in the air, it is hard to get a grip on a moving child
- Scratch around the abductor's face, poke at his/her eyes, hit the Adam's apple
- Bite the abductor HARD
- If a bystander is near, latch onto that person's leg and don't let go
- If your wrists are taped, chew through the tape or cut it on a belt buckle
- If put in a car trunk, kick out the tail lights and stick a hand out of the hole
- If put in a car trunk, remove the taillight panel, disconnect the wires, police may notice the car
- If on a bike, do not let go of the bike, making it impossible to put you in a car
Useful Web sites
- Consumer Reports School Safety
Check out this safety recall site maintained by Consumer Reports and endorsed by the National PTA for the latest recalls.
- On Guard Online
This site provides practical tips from the federal government and technology industry on how to safety use the Internet.
- Parents for Megan's Law
This site provides easy access to sex offender registries and links to report offenders who fail to comply with registration requirements. The site also includes sexual abuse prevention resources and assistance in accessing crime victim support services. National Megan's Law Helpline - (888) ASK-PFML (888-275-7365).