Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) has appointed Loudoun County Sheriff Mike Chapman to a newly created task force aimed at increasing school and campus safety across the commonwealth, the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.
Chapman is one of five newly appointed law enforcement officers from Virginia. The task force includes educators, public safety experts, local leaders, mental health professionals, legislators, parents and students.
The group will conduct a review of school safety issues, including established policies and procedures, and crisis and emergency management plans. The task force will also share best practices, identify resource challenges and provide legislative and budget proposals to the governor to help address “critical gaps or needs associated with safety and security” in Virginia schools, the sheriff’s office said.
McDonnell issued an executive order to establish the task force on Dec. 20, after the mass shooting Dec. 14 at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.
The task force will have its first meeting at Monday in the Patrick Henry Building in Richmond.
The group will provide initial recommendations to the governor by Jan. 31 and offer additional input on an ongoing basis.
A final report is to be issued by June 30, with the goal to have the recommended actions in place by the start of the 2013-14 school year.
Loudoun County Transit will offer commuter bus service on Inauguration Day, Jan. 21.
Buses will operate between several park-and-ride lots in Loudoun and the West Falls Church Metrorail station.
Morning buses to West Falls Church (Metro’s Orange Line) will depart as early as 4:10 a.m. Buses will return to Loudoun at regular intervals between 3 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. Loudoun County Transit representatives will direct passengers to the appropriate buses at the West Falls Church Metrorail Station.
→Harmony Park and Ride Lot (Hamilton): departures from 39464 E. Colonial Hwy. every 30 minutes between 4:15 a.m. and 6:45 a.m. Returns from West Falls Church Metro station every 30 minutes between 3 p.m. and 7:45 p.m.
→Leesburg Park and Ride Lot: departures from 19730 Sycolin Rd. every 10 minutes between 4:10 a.m. and 7:10 a.m. Returns from West Falls Church Metro station every 15 minutes between 3 p.m. and 7:45 p.m.
→Dulles North Transit Center: departures every five minutes between 4:15 a.m. and 7:05 a.m. Returns from West Falls Church Metro station every 10 minutes between 3 p.m. and 7:45 p.m.
→Cascades area: Five scheduled departures from Broad Run Farms, Cascades and Lowes Island to West Falls Church between 4:39 a.m. and 7:10 a.m. Five scheduled returns between 3:10 p.m. and 6:55 p.m.
Rides on transit buses will cost $2.50 when paying with exact cash, or $2 with a SmarTrip card. Passengers boarding Metrorail trains will need to buy Farecards or use SmarTrip cards at Metrorail stations.
Loudoun’s Department of Transportation and Capital Infrastructure has a limited supply of Inauguration Day Commemorative SmarTrip cards (pre-loaded with a one-day pass for unlimited Metrorail travel) that can be purchased with cash or check. The office is on the fourth floor of the Loudoun County Government Center, 1 Harrison St. SE, Leesburg. Business hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.
For information, go to www.loudoun.gov/bus or call 703-771-5665.
Go to www.metroopensdoors.com for Metrorail passenger information.
— Compiled by Caitlin Gibson