337.436.7275 1620 Bank Street Lake Charles, LA 70601

School Safety

April 16, 2018

Message from the Office of Catholic Schools: (Download PDF File)

The Office of Catholic Schools along with school site administration believe that keeping your children safe is our top priority each and every day. Listed below are several safety measures currently in place designed to safeguard students and ensure positive student learning in the classroom.

Visitor Registry: All visitors must be identified and announced prior to entering campus. Signature log books and name tags are required on each of our campuses.
Controlled Access: All schools have exterior building doors that are remotely controlled and/or monitored. Schools work with local law enforcement to allow a quick response time in the event of an emergency in which doors need to be accessed or locked.

Video Monitoring: School activity both inside and out is monitored using digital equipment. School administration continues to plan for upgrades and additional equipment as needed.

Local Fire Department: Monthly fire drills ensure our students and staff are prepared to exit the building quickly and orderly should an emergency arise. Local fire agencies conduct inspections of our campuses annually.

Emergency Training and Preparedness: Each campus within the Diocese of Lake Charles conducts a variety of emergency preparedness training and student drills each semester. Training is in place for severe weather shelter practices, evacuation procedures and lockdown in the event of imminent danger towards students within the school property. During a “lockdown” situation, routine within the school is maintained, however no one may enter or leave the facility and there are no outside activities.
Crisis Communications Plan: The district has a comprehensive system in place whereby administrators are notified of an emergency situation. Schools can notify parents via the use of messaging systems and other forms of social media. The goal is to quickly disseminate accurate and timely information to first responders, district staff, parents and community members such that the safety of your children is maintained.

Multi-Hazard Emergency Operations Plan: Since 2015, the Office of Catholic School’s Safety team has participated in training in Emergency Operations with The Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP) through a U.S. Department of Education state grant. The Safety Team is comprised of members from individual schools and the Superintendent’s office. Through this training, our campus staff has built capacity ensure comprehensive all-hazards emergency operations planning.
Partnerships with Local Law Enforcement: School campuses work with local law enforcement to ensure campus safety and provide staff with training resources. Most recently, schools conducted safety walk-throughs to identify areas on campuses that could be improved.

Considering the recent tragedies throughout our country, several schools have held “active shooter” drills to assist campuses in their preparedness.
As Superintendent, I trust that we have the people, processes, infrastructure and crisis communications plans in place to help keep your c ldren safe on our school campuses. We continue to work with community agencies do that if and when an emergency arises, our staff is trained to respond. We will also continue to partner with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and National Catholic Education Association (NCEA) who provide resources for campus safety and emergency planning protocols.
I believe that Catholic schools within the Diocese of Lake Charles are a safe place for our students and I thank you for entrusting them to our care.

Blessings & Peace,

Kimberlee Gazzolo
Superintendent of Schools Diocese of Lake Charles