March 2023: School Administrator


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Assessing Threats Deftly

Perhaps one of the most sensitive facets of safety in schools right now involves the work of assessing potential threats of students to commit violent actions.

That’s the topic thoughtfully explored by Dewey Cornell in his piece “Behavioral Threat Assessment and Intervention in Schools." A forensic psychologist who has advised federal law enforcement, Cornell takes great pains to ensure the prevention measures of threat assessment are applied with care in K-12 education. He details the most common misconceptions about threat assessment and the potential dangers when applied in a zero-tolerance environment.

This issue also features the work of Michele Gay, co-founder of Safe and Sound Schools. The national advocacy and training group is based in Newtown, Conn., where Gay lost her daughter Josephine Grace in the mass tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14, 2012. In her article “Multidisciplinary Teams Tackle School Safety," she describes a more holistic approach for security that incorporates an array of staff roles.

Other contributions to this theme issue on safety and mental wellness include Deanna Ashby, a former superintendent in Kentucky, and Anne Brown of the Cook Center for Human Connection.

We welcome your comments.

Jay P. Goldman
Editor, School Administrator

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