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Grand Haven Area Public Schools hires first Safety and Security Director

GHAPS announced that it has hired a former Secret Service agent for its new Safety and Security Director position.
Credit: GHAPS

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. — Grand Haven Area Public Schools (GHAPS) has announced that it has created and filled a new security position for the district.

The school district says that they have selected Trent Carithers for the new Safety and Security Director position.

GHAPS says they created the new position to further its ongoing commitment to school safety and security.

Carithers enters his new role with more than 20 years of experience as a Secret Service agent.

“School safety and security are always a priority,” shares GHAPS Superintendent Scott Grimes. “Mr. Carithers is uniquely skilled to elevate our district’s safety and security programs. He will coordinate school emergency response systems, provide enhanced training to staff and students, and supervise general building conditions.” 

Carithers says that he saw this new position as a perfect way to spend his retirement.

“As a parent, I’ve always been concerned about kids having a safe learning environment – and making sure the community’s students and staff are protected feels like a worthy goal,” he said.

“Everyone has been super welcoming, supportive and way ahead of the game. I didn’t quite know what I was getting myself into, but there’s a solid plan in place here and I was surprised by how thorough it is. A lot has gone into security here, there’s a solid base to start from.” 

Carithers was immediately impressed with the staff's awareness and noted that a GHAPS principal identified a line-of-sight issue during a drill. “He came back to the school and tinted the windows himself, immediately solving a vulnerability he’d noticed,” Carithers said.

“Conducting thorough building assessments and safety audits, mitigating line-of-sight issues, detailing entrance and exit plans, I will be doing the same things here in our schools," Carithers said.

GHAPS has a May bond proposal that includes improving security at building entrances and restroom upgrades. The bond will also address replacing the 70-year-old middle school.

You can learn more about the 2023 bond proposal here.

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