Campus News

UB to host 15th annual Safe Schools Initiative Seminar


Published March 13, 2018

“Ensuring school safety is critical in order for learning to take place.”
Amanda Nickerson, director
Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention

UB will host the 15th annual Safe Schools Initiative Seminar, “Collaborating to Address Safety & Mental Health Issues, and to Recover from Crises,” from 8:15 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. March 20 in the Center for the Arts on the UB North Campus.

The event is free, but registration is required.

The goal of this year’s seminar is to help participants enhance collaboration, address mental health issues, de-escalate crises and learn lessons about response and recovery from school-based tragedies.

Two nationally renowned speakers who are strong advocates for enhanced school security, preventive measures and incident recovery responses will lead the seminar.

Michele Gay is a mother, former teacher and one of the founders of Safe and Sound Schools: A Sandy Hook Initiative. After losing her daughter, Josephine Grace, on Dec. 14, 2012, she chose to take action as an advocate for improved security and safety in the nation’s schools.

Mo Canady, a 25-year law enforcement veteran with the Hoover, Alabama, Police Department, became executive director for the National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO) in 2011. A law enforcement instructor since 1993, Canady became an instructor for NASRO in 2001 and a board member in 2005. He is a past president of the Alabama Association of School Resource Officers.

“Ensuring school safety is critical in order for learning to take place,” says Amanda Nickerson, director of UB’s Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention. “The topics of this year’s event are timely and build on the past success of the program.”

The Safe Schools Seminar’s program sponsors include UB; The United States Secret Service, Buffalo Field Office; the United States Attorney’s Office, Western District of New York; the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; and, new this year, the Erie County District Attorney’s Office.

The program is open to all school personnel who deal with school or building safety issues, including grade school, middle school, high school and district faculty, staff (administrators, counselors, psychologists, school resource officers, etc.) and school board members; college/university administrators, police officers and other law enforcement officials; first responders; elected officials; and school transportation professionals.

“This year, the Secret Service, along with our partners, will be celebrating the 15th anniversary of the Safe School Initiative Seminar, which has brought together thousands of school administrators, teachers, law enforcement officials and other stakeholders to discuss best practices for the prevention of, or a response to, an incident of targeted violence at our schools,” says Lewis Robinson, special agent in charge of the Buffalo Field Office of the U.S. Secret Service. “The Safe School Initiative Seminar has been central to building the partnerships needed to safeguard Western New York schools from an incident of targeted violence.”

The Utica National Insurance Group, which has provided vital support for the seminar since 2009, is the exclusive seminar sponsor. Community partners include the New York State Police, Erie County Law Enforcement Foundation, the Western New York Educational Service Council, the New York State Leadership Group, APEX Window Films and Doyle Security.

More information and registration are available online.