Wicomico Schools Form Youth Safety Task Force

SALISBURY – Wicomico County Public Schools has joined forces with three agencies to create a new Youth Safety Task Force.

Late last month, the leaders of Wicomico County Public Schools, the Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office, the Department of Juvenile Services and the Office of the State’s Attorney for Wicomico County formed a task force to identify and address systematic issues involving youth in the community.

The goal of the task force is to quickly and effectively implement solutions to protect the safety and rights of every child, support academic integrity, and build a strong and vital future for all of Wicomico County, according to a press release.

“This purposefully small task force aims to maintain and grow public confidence through the collaboration of top policy and decision makers in agencies that are among those most responsible for our students and youth,” the statement reads. “The scope of the task force is narrowly tailored to address those issues which create systemic problems that can only be remedied through the coordinated and collaborative efforts of its members. Through this forum, members can institute problem-solving solutions quickly, effectively and with the ultimate goal of protecting the safety, rights and academic experience of the entire student body and youth of Wicomico County.”

The newly created task force comes on the heels of several incidents at Wicomico County public schools.

In October, for example, a 13-year-old student was charged with threat of mass violence for her involvement in a bomb threat at James M. Bennett High School. And in November, three teachers at Parkside High School sustained minor injuries following a fight between students.

About The Author: Bethany Hooper

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Bethany Hooper has been with The Dispatch since 2016. She currently covers various general stories. Hooper graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 2012 and the University of Maryland in 2016, where she completed double majors in journalism and economics.