FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 31, 2020

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Attorney General Steve Marshall Presents Westlawn Middle School with 2019 Safe School Award of Excellence

(MONTGOMERY)—Attorney General Steve Marshall today presented Westlawn Middle School in Tuscaloosa with the Alabama Safe Schools Initiative Attorney General’s 2019 Safe School Award of Excellence, Central Region. Schools were selected as winners of the Attorney General’s 2019 Safe School Award from
each of the eight state school board districts as well as one private school statewide. In addition, three schools were selected for the Attorney General’s 2019 Safe School Award of Excellence and 61 schools were selected for the Attorney General’s 2019 Certificate of Building a Culture for School Safety.

“The safety of our schoolchildren is a vital matter foremost in all of our minds and hearts, and this year we have enhanced the Alabama Safe Schools Initiative Awards to encourage and honor more of those who have implemented strong programs to protect our students, teachers and other staff,” said Attorney General Marshall. “These schools have developed innovative programs and taken practical, effective steps to combat the threat of violence that has become a terrible part of our modern society. Their dedication and resolve to provide a safe haven for learning is an inspiration to us all.”

In presenting the award today Attorney General Marshall said, “The Attorney General’s Office is proud that Westlawn Middle School was selected as one of three schools in Alabama to receive the 2019 Safe School Award of Excellence. In making this decision, judges noted many things that distinguished Westlawn Middle School: its commitment that safety is everyone’s responsibility, monthly school safety meetings, heavily-involved school resource officer, doorbell front access, camera system, phones in every class, and keycards.”

Dr. Tiffany Davis, principal, said, “Safety is everyone's responsibility at Westlawn Middle School. We work together to create a culture of safety/a culture of care for all students, faculty and staff members, community, and visitors. We believe this award speaks volume of our school culture and our school-family-community partnerships. It truly does takes all of us to ensure that our school is a safe place. As the leader, it is important to me that my students feel safe at school every day. Thank you for recognizing our efforts.”

In coming weeks, Attorney General Marshall is presenting the Safe School Award to nine winning schools throughout Alabama, as well the Safe School Award of Excellence to the state’s top three schools overall.

For the Attorney General’s 2019 Safe School Award, one public school with the top score was selected for each of the eight state public school districts and one private school statewide. These winners are District 1: Pleasant Home School, Andalusia; District 2: Loachapoka High School, Loachapoka; District 3: Shades Mountain Elementary School, Hoover; District 4: Northridge Middle School, Tuscaloosa; District 5; Prattville Junior High School, Prattville; District 6: Austin High School, Decatur; District 7: Forest Hills Elementary, Florence; District 8: Discovery Middle School, Madison; and private school: Lee-Scott Academy, Auburn. Attorney General Marshall will visit these schools to present
the awards in person.

For the Attorney General’s 2019 Safe School Award of Excellence, one public school with the top overall score was selected from the North, Central and South regions of Alabama. Attorney General Marshall will visit each school to present the award in person. These winners are North Region: Decatur Middle School, Decatur; Central Region: Westlawn Middle School, Tuscaloosa; and South Region: Orange Beach Elementary School, Orange Beach.

Winners were selected by a panel of independent judges who reviewed submissions from a total of 124 schools. A list of schools that received the Attorney General’s 2019 Certificate of Building a Culture for School Safety may be found in the Attorney General’s news release of December 19, 2019, available through this link.

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