PACE Day delivers more opportunities to learn about school safety

PACE Administrator Dave Harvey (right) moderates “Ask the Attorney” at PACE Day.PACE Administrator Dave Harvey (right) moderates “Ask the Attorney” at PACE Day: Safe and Secure Schools on Thursday at the Salem Convention Center. (Photo by Alex Pulaski, OSBA) 

An expanded PACE Day lineup awaited attendees Thursday at the Salem Convention Center.

This year, PACE Day: Safe and Secure Schools offered four session periods with four workshop choices each session. Attendees could choose among breakouts covering topics such as limiting athletic liability, preventing sports-related bullying, navigating Title IX, responding to crises and avoiding employment lawsuits.

“I like having the opportunity to learn things more closely related to my job,” said Denise Lapp, Canby School District director of finance.

Property and Casualty Coverage for Education is an insurance pool made up of roughly 300 Oregon member school districts, charter schools, education service districts and community colleges. The annual PACE Day provides safety education and networking opportunities.

Wendy Jones, Rogue Community College risk management coordinator, said the day’s packed agenda encouraged her to bring the college’s athletic director to cover more ground.

About 200 people signed up for the day. Between sessions, booths demonstrated a SawStop in action, the proper use of a fire extinguisher with a simulated fire and Drive Square’s bus-mounted simulator of dangers for drivers. Attendees could arrange school demonstrations of the safety devices.  

The day included PACE Awards for six programs and two individuals.

Klamath County School District earned the statewide Safety Star for its half-day active shooter drill. PACE gave the district $5,000 for its school safety improvement efforts.

“Nothing is more important to us than getting every child and every employee home safe, every day,” said PACE Administrator Dave Harvey. “That requires a lot of planning from our members, and through the PACE Awards we can thank them for their hard work.”

PACE named five other outstanding programs:

  • Clatskanie SD for switching all its lights to LED.
  • Seaside SD for a monthly school safety contest for students.
  • Springfield SD for its risk evaluation of boiler and mechanical rooms.
  • Chemeketa Community College for its centralized Title IX compliance program.
  • InterMountain ESD for its interest in door-locking systems.

Tim Witcher, Clackamas ESD chief financial officer, was recognized for establishing a culture of caring, safety and wellness. Michelle Brady, Hillsboro SD safety and emergency preparedness manager, was recognized for improved safety and compliance tracking and training.

- Jake Arnold, OSBA