Sunday, April 28, 2013
State Sen. Bob Mensch (R-24) co-sponsors legislation aimed at improving school safety in the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy.
The Pennsylvania Senate has unanimously approved legislation co-sponsored by state Sen. Bob Mensch that's aimed at improving school safety, including grants for armed guards. The bill now goes to the House of Representatives for consideration, and comes at a time when the Easton Area School District—part of Mensch's district—is considering expanding the number of armed guards at its schools, as part of a larger effort at improving school safety. The school board is expected to vote next month on a measure that would also include new security cameras and a district-wide key card system. The Mensch bill would expand the current Safe Schools Grant program in the Pennsylvania Department of Education, and it would establish a new grant program …
Sunday, April 14, 2013
Cetronia Elementary School in the Parkland School District creates a peace painting with thumbprints of students and staff as 'healing' gift to Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Cetronia Elementary School's act of "kindness"—a peace painting created with the thumbprints of its students and staff—has made its way to Newtown Public Schools in Connecticut. Cetronia art teacher Susan Hardy, who spearheaded the project, learned in an email last week that the painting is currently being displayed in the Newtown Public Schools Central Office until a decision is made on the future Sandy Hook Elementary School. "I was actually very surprised," said Hardy, who figured the painting might be put in a storage area for some time since Sandy Hook has likely been inundated with cards, paper snowflakes and other symbols of support following the shooting tragedy there. "What a beautiful creation of thumbprints!" wrote Newtown …
Thursday, March 28, 2013
Easton Mayor Sal Panto and other members of Mayors Against Illegal Guns rally on 'National Day to Demand Action.'
Congress may be on its Easter/Passover recess, but the group Mayors Against Illegal guns doesn't want it to catch a break. On Thursday, MAIG and Organizing For Action led a series of 100 rallies around the country asking people to contact their legislators to get them to support stronger gun laws. One of those rallies happened in Easton's Centre Square, where Mayor Sal Panto told supporters current background check laws are "milquetoast" regulations that overlook things like gun shows. "You get a job today, you get a background check," Panto said. "You rent an apartment, you get a background check." Yet more than six million guns were sold with no background checks last year, the mayor said. MAIG also wants Congress to make gun trafficking…
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
City Council meets with community, education leaders to discuss making schools safer.
If you've dropped your kids off at one of Easton's three elementary schools recently, you might have seen a police officer on patrol outside or even walking the halls. That's a recent change inspired by the Sandy Hook school shooting, Lt. John Remaley told City Council's public safety committee Tuesday night as it met with community leaders to discuss making Easton's kids safer. Councilman Jeffrey Warren, who heads the committee, said the meeting was held in response to both Sandy Hook and from a 2012 in which Easton recorded six violent deaths. He said that although it's an issue that won't be solved with one meeting, it's important to get people talking. “From discussions come solutions," he said. "It may not be a solution right off the …
Monday, January 21, 2013
Where to celebrate Martin Luther King Day, City Council, and more...
Good morning, everyone. As we do every Monday, we're setting aside some space to look ahead to what's happening this week. 1. Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. We've posted a list of places that are closed, and various events around the city. 2. Easton City Council's public safety committee will discuss the safety of the city's schools in the wake of the Sandy Hook massacre. The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall. 3. Gutiarist Jesse Cook plays Thursday night at 8 at the State Theatre. 4. Do you want to post your events on our site? Here's a quick primer on how to do it. 5. Today is Jan. 21. I'm not much for sports-related trivia, but it's interesting to note that retired basketball players Hakeem Olajuwon and Detlef …
Thursday, January 17, 2013
President Obama said the laws, including universal background checks and a renewed ban on assault rifles, would lead to "fewer atrocities like the one that happened in Newtown."
Alongside Vice President Joe Biden and a group of children who had written in support, President Barack Obama signed a proposal to Congress Wednesday to strengthen United States gun laws, including universal background checks, limiting the number of bullets in a clip, and renewing a ban on military-grade assault rifles. "If America worked harder to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people, there would be fewer atrocities like the one that occurred in Newtown," Obama said. Check out these related stories He listed some specific measures, including a 10-round limit on magazines for firearms, and asked congress to confirm Todd Jones to fill the long-dormant role of chief for the Bureau of Alchol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) — and briefly…
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
School district reviewing its security procedures in the wake of Sandy Hook.
The Easton Area School District could dip into its $12 million reserve fund to pay for security improvements at its schools. Those improvements -- outlined Tuesday evening by district Chief Executive Officer Michael Simonetta -- could include metal detectors, extra cameras, panic buttons, security doors known as "man traps," and armed guards. Simonetta made his report to the board one day after Easton Area Middle School was evacuated because of a bomb threat, and a month and a day after the mass shooting at a school in Newtown, CT that left 20 students dead. “Doing nothing is the wrong thing to do," said Simonetta. Currently, the district has security guards and school police officers at the middle school and Easton Area High School. It …
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
The vice president has been meeting with parties on both sides of the gun control debate, as well as mental health advocates, as he crafts proposals in response to the Dec. 14 Newtown school shooting. And the NRA responds.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is expected to announce sweeping policy changes to gun laws and mental health care on Tuesday, two weeks earlier than expected. In Pennsylvania, two lawmakers say they want teachers to carry guns. Biden's recommendations, at the request of President Barack Obama, are a response to the Dec. 14 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School that claimed the life of 20 first-graders and six educators. According to a report by the Huffington Post, Biden's proposals are likely to address the availability and access to certain types of guns and ammunition, and tackle the issue of data collection and background checks. While Connecticut State Police continue their investigation into the Newtown shooting, authorities have …
Saturday, January 12, 2013
Valerie Davis crafts drawings in memory of students killed in Connecticut school shooting.
- THE NEIGHBORHOOD FILES
- Tom Coombe
Saturday, January 12
After the deadly school shootings, Easton Area Middle School art teacher Valerie Davis said everything was like a blur. "I didn't know how to mourn," she said. Then came another blur: 12 days of non-stop drawing, as Davis created 26 portraits of each of the victims. "I would start drawing at 5 a.m.," she said. "That's all I did...my whole entire holiday." Davis displayed the results of her work Friday afternoon at the Easton Boys & Girls Club, but she wanted club members to do more than look. She asked the children to look at the pictures, and to write letters that will go to the families of the victims. Davis plans to deliver the letters to Connecticut herself. Before the kids got to work, they walked the room, examining the portraits. …
Saturday, December 22, 2012
The NRA on Friday called for every school in the country to have armed guards. Is that a solution?
Earlier this week -- in the wake of the Connecticut school shooting -- we asked if Easton should restore security guards to its elementary schools. On Friday, the National Rifle Association said that needs to happen in every school in the nation. And not just guards, but guards with guns. "Can't we afford to put a police officer in every single school?" asked NRA executive vice president Wayne LaPierre. That's a question school officials will be asking in the next few weeks. (Easton Area High School and Easton Area Middle School already have armed police officers, the Express-Times noted Friday.) Is LaPierre's suggestion something all schools need to adopt? Take our poll, and tell us in the comments.