Safety & Security Updates for the ‘23-’24 School Year

Safety First

Dear Crossroads Community-
One of our most important goals at Crossroads is to provide a safe learning environment for all students. In recent years, our country and our local community have experienced increased rates of violence, mental health issues, and for many, a lack of resources to address these important issues.

To that end, our team has surveyed families and staff, solicited feedback at Superintendent Roundtables, held one-on-one conversations, and received guidance from security consultants and mental health professionals over the past year and a half in an effort to have an understanding of the prevailing concerns, needs, and solutions. To continue reaching for our goal to make our schools a healthy and safe space for all, we have made great strides in the area of safety and security at Crossroads, district-wide.

From its inception, Crossroads has utilized a multi-tier, trauma-informed approach to addressing behavioral issues in order to build a positive school climate; we strive to provide essential services, supports, and resources to meet the needs of each student and promote social and emotional skills to prevent social alienation and violence. Our model centralizes safety for every student by fostering strong relationships with students, promoting socio-emotional skill building, and enhancing belonging and engagement. Additionally, Crossroads has added layers of security to our buildings to mitigate threats that may come from both inside and outside entities whether that be environmental, threats of violence, or other hazards.

In order to enhance and strengthen the current structure for a positive school culture and provide a physically safer structure and system, the following steps have been taken within the last year. Please note this is not an exhaustive list, but a summary of key action items:

  1. Completed a district-wide, comprehensive risk assessment process
  2. Assembled a Crisis Management Team that meets monthly
  • Comprised of representatives of each building and Central Office staff to develop and review emergency procedures, and train on emergency preparedness
  • Implemented a Family Reunification Plan
  1. Assembled a Threat Assessment Team that meets bi-weekly
  • This cross-disciplinary team of staff members utilizes standardized best practice threat assessment tools to identify, respond to, and manage threats as they emerge
  1. Constructed a secure entry lobby at CPA
  2. Implementation of random bag and locker checks at CPA
  3. Added additional staffing
  • Restorative Justice Coordinators at Central Street and Quality Hill
  • School Culture Assistants/Student Safety Specialists at CPA*
  1. New/additional equipment
  • Door alarm on west door CPA
  • Added exterior cameras at Central St and Quality Hill
  • Upgraded cameras at CPA
Group of children

These enhancements have been balanced with Crossroads’ commitment to a trauma-informed, restorative justice response to behavioral issues. 

In addition to the above, we are proud to announce that Crossroads Charter Schools was selected as one of only two grantees in the state of Missouri for the highly competitive “STOP School Violence” federal grant from the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance. In total, Crossroads will receive more than $800,000 over three years to add capacity to our school climate improvement efforts at Crossroads Preparatory Academy. Through the addition of a second SparkWheel (formerly Communities in Schools) coordinator and the hiring of three School Culture Assistants (see below). This project will improve the school climate at Crossroads Preparatory Academy and help decrease and prevent school violence by meeting the academic, behavioral, and basic needs of students.

Finally, Crossroads was also awarded a $150,000 School Safety grant in fall of 2023 from the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) to support our safety and security efforts.