SMITHFIELD, N.C. – Sex offenders are already prohibited from living near schools, but Johnston County is considering completely banning them from campus.
That includes parents of students at the schools if they are on the sex offender registry.
The proposed policy permits parents on the registry to participate in parent-teacher conferences, provided they receive advance written approval of the school’s principal. Parents can also come to campus at the request of the principal “for any reason relating to the welfare or transportation of his or her child.”
There is also an exception for voters assigned to a precinct at a school, but the person must inform the principal in advance of their intent to vote and leave immediately after completing a ballot.
The Johnston County Board of Education will vote on the policy at its September 12 meeting.
“There have been no issues. This is just a proactive stance on the part of the Johnston County Public Schools Board of Education. We’ve always followed general statute. This particular policy just strengthens our practice, and it provides clearer guidelines for our principals,” JCPS Chief of Communications Crystal Roberts said.
In order to make one of the approved campus visits, parents on the registry would be required to meet a staff member at the edge of the school property and be supervised during the duration of their time at school.
“I think it’s a great policy to put in effect, but how am I supposed to know that it’s actually being enforced,” elementary school parent Takeyah Nelson said.
“If I bring my child to the park, I don’t know that Tom over there is a sex offender. I don’t know that Regina over there is a child abductor. How are you going to enforce it?”
Roberts said registered sex offenders are supposed to self-disclose their status. She said principals and school staff are also familiar with their students’ families and will probably be aware if there is a violator on school property.
See the rest of this story at WNCN.