Forum Friday About School Safety

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The Payson Unified School District will hold a public forum Friday at the Payson High School auditorium to explain school safety and district preparations and strategies.

Doors will open at 6 p.m. to allow residents to sign a community letter to the people of Littleton, Colo., and school principals will be available for questions.

At 7 p.m., Payson High School Principal Phil Gille, Rim Country Middle School Principal Frank Larby and Payson School District director of personnel and student services Mike Wheelis will give formal presentations about local school safety and policies.

The forum is in reaction to the April 20 shootings of 12 students and a teacher by a pair of Columbine High School teens in Littleton.

Meanwhile, members of the business community and educational organizations across Arizona have banded together to create a community coalition to show support for safe schools and communities.

The group has begun to distribute "I Support Safe Schools and Safe Communities" stickers at Circle K stores and Bank One offices.

Community members are being urged to wear them on Friday, April 30 to show their support for the education community.

On Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., the Payson Roundup will also be distributing stickers. Community members can stop in the office and sign a community letter to the people of Littleton, Colo. and pick up a sticker.

"Now is the time to rally around our schools, to share the grief and help shoulder the responsibility for ensuring that all schools are safe havens for our children and the educators who lead them through learning," said Arizona School Boards Association Executive Director Panfilo Contrereas.

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