Campus Safety at Natural Bridges

Dear Gateway families,

We’ve had great fun taking our K-5 students to the new campus over the last several weeks. Their excitement while exploring the new classrooms, common areas and open spaces of the site has been nothing short of joyous! It’s gratifying to see the vision of the new campus slowly become a reality as we get closer to our move date.

The Natural Bridges campus is significantly larger than our current site, and as we’ve moved through the design and construction process, we’ve thought carefully about how we will ensure the safety of our students and faculty while on the campus. I’m pleased to let you know about several ways we are addressing this topic.

To begin changing the neighborhood’s relationship with the campus, we have installed and activated a multi-camera security system that feeds to a staffed, overnight command center. The cameras alert the control room when they sense movement, and are equipped with two-way communication that allows the security agent to alert trespassers that the campus is closed. This system has proven very effective at reducing overnight transience at Harbor High School over the past three months, and in just a few short weeks we are seeing a positive impact.

We are also addressing a variety of physical campus items to improve site safety. For example, we’ve removed and reset some concrete sidewalks that presented tripping hazards, and installed windows into certain doors and walls to improve visibility and sightlines. We will also be installing fencing in a variety of places, including the sloped lawn that borders Swift Street, to create a “front yard” for our elementary program, and ensuring the fencing around the entire campus is appropriate and secure.

Finally, we have signed a contract with Joffe Emergency Services, the state-wide leaders in independent school safety, to conduct a complete safety audit of the new campus. Joffe will identify security concerns; develop emergency plans, a comprehensive safety manual, and new safety drills; review and update our communication and notification systems; and provide onsite training for staff, additional crisis response training for the administration, and even a parent education event. We are looking forward to having their expertise guide us on the new campus.

We are still on time and on target with both our construction process and moving our materials to the new campus. I hope you can join us while we start the packing process here at the Eucalyptus campus on June 1st, and at the new campus for some hands-on construction efforts on June 8th. Please rsvp to Jeremy King or stop by the front desk to sign up.

Warmly,

Dr. Zachary Roberts

Head of School