Some parents of students in the Westmont Hilltop School District are raising concerns about what they say is a lack of safety in the school district.
According to police, back in December of 2021, investigators uncovered a school shooting plot inside the high school.
While the incident was handled, parents were left unsatisfied with the safety measures implemented by the school.
Consequently, a group was formed, the Concerned citizens of Westmont Hilltop, or CCWH, to address issues that they said the school board was largely ignoring. They met Monday evening to discuss their goals regarding how they can change the way the school is operating in order to provide a safer environment for their kids.
One of the main initiatives was hiring adequate school police to patrol the building.
“It’s amazing what we found out about what’s been going on there,” said Patrick O’Connor, a member of the Concerned Citizens of Westmont Hilltop group. “Going back to my discussions with the administration back in mid-December after we learned about the extent of the threat that occurred there on December 7th and the subsequent decisions that were made about that by the administration to hire only an SPO versus our explicit advice to hire at least 4 SRO’s that report to the local police.”
But this is only the tip of the iceberg, O’Connor further states that changes need to be made at what the group sees as the root of the problem.
“We have a litany of things that we want to do, security remains number one and we believe we can only accomplish that if we replace the majority of the board and the current administration without prejudice,” said O’Connor.
The group is preparing for and actively seeking candidates for the November 2023 board of education elections where 5 of the 9 seats are up for reelection.
Among the issues discussed by the CCWH are the building of a cell tower to provide cell service to the school, transportation patterns that endanger students, and the handling of a recent sexual assault case by the school administration.
If you would like to become involved with the Concerned Citizens of Westmont Hilltop visit their Facebook page.
The group will be meeting on the first and third Mondays of each month.