EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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December 15, 2012

Locals react to school shootings


A volunteer from Landry’s team, a local policeman, a state policeman and a clergy member will go to a family’s homes to deliver news about a victim. The policemen will deliver the news and give them as much detail as they can about the event. The policemen will then leave and the volunteer and clergy member will be there to support the families and answer any further questions they may have.

Landry took time to applaud some of the efforts done by teachers in Connecticut.

“As students were walking out of the school, teachers were protecting them from viewing bodies,” Landry said. “The state of Connecticut also assigned a state trooper to be in touch with every single family of the victims.”

While shopping yesterday, Sveta Ivanovich, a parent of three Andover children, said she divulged very little about the tragedy to her children, but she did do one thing as soon as she got home.

“I gave them a big hug and told them I loved them,” Ivanovich said.

Lawrence vigil planned

In Lawrence, Mayor William Lantigua and local clergy will host a prayer vigil at Lawrence City Hall at 6 p.m. tomorrow to offer support and sympathy for the victims.

“All are invited to attend as we gather as Lawrencians with community leaders to share our sorrow over such an evil act of violence,” the mayor’s chief economic development director Patrick J. Blanchette said.

People interested in the prayer vigil can call the Mayor’s Office at 978 620-3013.

Superintendent/receiver Jeffrey C. Riley said every school in Lawrence Public Schools has specific “crisis plans” in place to protect children and staff from situations like the one at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

“The plans are updated regularly and distributed to every staff member,” Riley said.

“The district engages in practice drills in every school with students, including lock in place, intruder alerts. The district has increased its safety staffing this year to 36 men and women who are re-trained and re-certified annually,” he said.

“They work with a team of four School Resource Officers from the Lawrence Police Department to keep our schools safe. Finally, as part of our push to upgrade facilities, we have updated and are continuing to update our surveillance (with dvr) and buzzer entry systems throughout the district,” he said.

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