Taking first day of school photos this year? Some safety tips to consider before you post to social media
Students head back to school next week and Fairfield police are urging parents to think carefully before posting first day of school photos to social media.
Fairfield police are warning about the amount of information that can be shared in back-to-school pictures.
It’s part of a broader school safety push, including an on-site presence, with lessons for students, staff and parents.
“Prevention is our best protection. School safety is everyone’s responsibility," said Sgt. James Wiltsie.
That includes proud parents sharing their children’s first day of school photos, which sometimes feature a bit too much information.
“When you post a picture with your address or outside in front of your house with your numeric address -- those are danger, red flag items," Wiltsie said.
East Hartford police have also spread this message online. Notice how in the photo on the right below erases the child’s last name, age, school, teacher and family information?
Online safety is one part of Fairfield police’s in-school lessons to elementary schoolers. The department includes six certified school resource officers, trained on Secret Service Threat Assessment protocol.
“Shortly after Sandy Hook, we dumped a lot of resources into staffing, full-time throughout the academic year, an entire division just dedicated to our schools. Their heart and soul and passion have to be part of that school safety environment,” Wiltsie said.
Wiltsie said part of their job is to connect the dots when students, staff or parents raise a concern.
“The central office gets notified, then we get notified that a certain individual may have been looking up some content that's alarming. If there are issues at home, if there are issues in the school, with grades, with family life, those are the red flags we're looking for to make sure that we get those kids to help that they need," he said.
In Fairfield, the coverage doesn’t stop at the grade school level.
"Whether you have an infant in preschool or a kid in college, we're here to make sure that you're ready for an emergency,” said Wiltsie.
Wiltsie is also reminding residents to always stop for school buses and to never text and drive.