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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Lock up before you leave



Padlock Hey teachers. You might trust your students, but what about the visitors who come to campus every day? In Pasco County, four educators who left their purses unsecured while helping kids go home the other day returned to find their credit cards missing. A witness told deputies that he saw a woman rummaging through one of the teacher's desks that afternoon. But no one has been caught.

Now, the Pasco Sheriff's Office is having principals and school resource officers send out messages warning educators to keep their personal effects under lock and key, especially when they're not in their classrooms.

"Make sure your door is locked and secured when you leave the room even for a short time," one SRO wrote in an e-mail to a high school staff. "Make sure your personal belongings are not only concealed, but locked away. If you have equipment or materials that are sensitive or expensive make sure the cabinets they are in are locked. Don't leave others in your classroom unattended."

Trinity Elementary teacher Keri Sarakun, who has known other teachers who have been ripped off while out of their rooms, said the concern is real. "We feel very safe on our campus," Sarakun told the Gradebook. "It's very sad to think that people would enter our schools and take from teachers. ... It's something we have to be mindful of."

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:23am]


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