Miami-Dade superintendent addresses security in back-to-school remarks

The head of Miami-Dade Public Schools held an address and news conference ahead of the school year.

MIAMI – Miami-Dade County Public Schools Superintendent Jose L. Dotres encouraged teachers to “connect and inspire” in an address Friday ahead of students’ return to the classroom Aug 17.

In a news conference afterward, he addressed school security concerns.

It was part of a large district event held at Miami Senior High School and was Dotres’ first such address as superintendent.

During the news conference portion of the event, Dotres was asked about how the district assesses students that may pose a security threat or a threat to themselves or others. It was a point raised in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission as something that should be improved upon.

“If a student represents a threat, and the threat assessment team identifies them, it’s not only important to identify them, it’s OK, what services will continue,” Dotres said. “So we contract out with local agencies to make sure that these students, if we have any, are continuously looked at and supported in terms of what we need.”

Security is top of mind for many in the wake of numerous school shootings across the country.

Dotres also said that mental health should be prioritized just as much as education and said it’s something he’s also focused on.

He also talked about staffing. Dotres said that industries across the board are in need of workers and things are no different in the education field.

He says, however, that things are looking up this school year and he looked forward to things being interruption-free relative to the last couple of years that have been interrupted by COVID-19.

About the Authors:

Liane Morejon is an Emmy-winning reporter who joined the Local 10 News family in January 2010. Born and raised in Coral Gables, Liane has a unique perspective on covering news in her own backyard.

Chris Gothner joined the Local 10 News team in 2022 as a Digital Journalist.