Emergency Management Director David Bryant says he’s gotten a positive response to the county’s new emergency alert system.
“I’ve had several already sign up,” Bryant noted of Hyper-Reach, which was implemented just a few weeks ago in the local community.
The county has switched from the Code Red system it had in the past to Hyper-Reach, and anyone who signed up previously for Code Red will now need to re-register with Hyper-Reach.
Bryant said the new system offers more options and is less expensive than Code Red.
He also noted that there were some issues with Code Red, which Bryant said the county had probably used for about a decade.
“It was not sending out alerts correctly or even at all, at times,” the emergency director said.
Bryant said the new Hyper-Reach system covers the whole county; it has the same capabilities as the other system, and users can register a smart device with the system, i.e., their cell phone, television or computer, or even a device like Alexa or Echo Dot, for example.
“(The alerts) can come to people through a variety of devices,” he observed. “You can decide which device you want it to come to.”
The county can also send its own alerts in some instances, and with the new Hyper-Reach system, it has the ability to send alerts to the whole county or to a portion of the county.
The system sends alerts in a variety of emergency situations, including everything from floods and fires to public health alerts, severe weather and criminal activity in the community.
Bryant noted that Hyper-Reach is one tool residents can turn to during emergencies, but he also urged that people should not just rely on the emergency alert system; he said they need multiple ways to get information in emergencies.
That way, if there’s an error in the alert system, families will have a back-up plan.
One suggestion he offered: a weather radio.
Bryant said several people signed up in the past to receive emergency alerts, and he hopes even more people will sign up with Hyper-Reach.
Individuals may sign up for the new emergency alert system in several different ways, including the following: by visiting hyper-reach.com/kytriggsignup.html, by calling 270-512-8686, by texting “alerts” to 270-512-8686 or by saying to your Alexa unit “Alexa, enable Hyper-Reach.”
There is no cost to participating residents.
Tables at the Veterans of Foreign Wars were piled high with coats and other items of clothing donated for eastern Kentucky flood victims.
One table held blankets.
The Cadiz Lions Club requested coats along with hats and gloves as part of a Winter Coat Drive organized to help the residents of six eastern Kentucky counties who were displaced by floods that decimated their homes last June.
But donors offered much more, “anything to keep you warm,” said the Lions Club’s Marsha Pater of the scarves, the bathrobes, the blue jeans, the sweaters and the sweatshirts that were dropped off on Friday and Saturday.
A Lions Club in Webster County brought more than 2,000 pairs of socks on Saturday morning.
There were 34 blankets donated, in addition to 85 women’s coats, 56 men’s coats and 38 children’s coats, and someone gave the local civic club a new package of underwear.
After learning of the 1,000 families living in tents in the flood-ravaged areas of eastern Kentucky, Pater decided to host the coat drive.
“I cannot imagine what the winter holds for them,” said Pater, the local club’s president.
She said Lions Club members are always there when people are in need; the club’s motto is “We serve,” and Pater wanted her club to make a difference in the lives of the flood victims.
“That’s part of the reason we’re Lions, to be there when someone needs help,” she said.
Pater noted that the local club stepped up to help Mayfield when tornadoes ravaged that community, and they’re now offering a helping hand to those in need in eastern Kentucky.
Pater and her husband William Pater learned of the plight of the flood victims while at a meeting in Mount Washington where Steve Pedersen, the first vice district governor in the Lions Club’s District Y, told them flood victims were living in tents and had no winter clothing.
Pedersen’s club in Tollesboro bought 40 coats to donate to the flood victims, and they were gone in a matter of minutes, Pater shared.
In its recent endeavor, the Cadiz club also reached out to the Hopkinsville Lions Club, which collected 40 coats this past Saturday.
The Cadiz club got almost $600 in donations, and Pater and other club members were to travel on Sunday to eastern Kentucky to deliver the cash donations, clothing and blankets.
The donations were to be received in Tollesboro and divided among Lions Clubs in Neon, Hyman, Jackson, Pikeville, Hazard and Whitesburg for distribution in those counties.
Pater said people may continue to drop off items at the VFW in Cadiz since the local club will have other meetings in eastern Kentucky and will be able to deliver those items.
Pater can be reached for more information at 270-206-4259 or at M Pater606@gmail.com.
Checks for monetary donations can be made payable to District 43Y Disaster Relief Fund.
Pater noted that the response to her club’s Winter Coat Drive has been overwhelming.
“Everybody that has heard the story that dropped off donations has thanked us for what we’re doing,” said Pater, noting she just wants to offer a helping hand to eastern Kentucky.
“What I am hoping to gain personally is to assist these people that are in need,” she said.
Proprietor Jeannie Bodine told her customers where they could eat while they were in town and directed them to other stores for shopping.
“I sent them to everybody whether they participated or not,” said Bodine, owner of The Purple Pig Antiques and Artisans, of this past weekend’s Mingle & Jingle holiday open house.
Bodine’s store was among 24 Trigg County businesses to participate in the open house, which this year was on Friday and Saturday.
Organized by the Trigg County Chamber of Commerce, the event encouraged people to get an early start on Christmas shopping by visiting the local merchants, and store owners said they enjoyed a steady clientele over the two days.
“I never see local people,” Bodine noted of the tourists who typically frequent her store.
But this time was different, with residents outnumbering tourists shopping for antiques.
Customer Patty Glass described herself as a junker rather than an antiquer and said she enjoys shopping at The Purple Pig as well as other stores in the local community.
She didn’t know about the Mingle & Jingle but browsed at least two stores that were participating in the promotion, including Consignment World and The Purple Pig.
“Today, I’m kind of looking at Christmas decorations, vintage decorations,” she said of her reason for dropping into the local stores.
Over at the Janice Mason Art Museum, Leida Tackett said “groups of friends” were coming by to browse through the museum’s offerings.
Local artists displayed their work for sale, books by authors Kim Fortner and Paul Fourshee could be had, and the likes of holiday ornaments and handcrafted toys were among the items available for an interested public.
Tackett noted that last year’s inaugural Mingle & Jingle was so successful for the museum that officials decided to be a part of it again.
People were enjoying getting together, hanging out and going to eat, she said.
“So they’re stopping in here,” Tackett said, noting that the Mingle & Jingle is a great way to get people in the Christmas spirit at a time of year when people are ready to go shopping.
After participating for the past couple of years, Bodine said she believes the holiday shopping event needs to continue in the community.
She was tickled this year to see people out and about.
“They’re here, and maybe they’ll come back,” she said, crediting Chamber Director Beth Sumner with the success of Mingle & Jingle.
“We’ve got to keep our downtown alive,” she continued.
Bodine said Sumner is really, really good at what she does, and she said the goody bags containing coupons that Sumner gives away as part of the event are well sought after.
Women were excited to get theirs this year, said Bodine of the bags that also come filled with gift cards, give away items and swag.
Sumner noted that the Mingle & Jingle 2022 attracted more shoppers as well as businesses that participated in the holiday shopping.
To accommodate people who said they couldn’t come on a Saturday, Sumner added an extra day this year, inviting Friday shoppers.
She actually gave away most of the goody bags on Friday, with only 25 left to give to prospective shoppers on Saturday morning.
Sumner said Mingle & Jingle is intended to increase people’s awareness of what is available in their own community.
“I always want to emphasize the (idea of) ‘shop local,’ ” she says, pointing out that local businesses are the ones supporting ball teams, youth and senior activities in the community.
Business owner Melissa Rogers of Trigg Tropics tanning salon and boutique agrees that the Mingle & Jingle is good for business.
Over the two days of this year’s event, she experienced a steady number of customers.
“It’s just good for the community, just good promotion for all the small businesses,” noted Rogers of the annual holiday open house.
Sponsors for the 2022 event included Cadiz-Trigg County Tourism, EnergyNet, WKDZ/WHVO Radio and Rodeway Inn, in addition to the chamber.
Trigg County Public Schools is embracing a new approach that focuses on improving the behavioral and mental health of its students in an effort to impact their performance at school.
“If we get behavior and mental health under control, we should see an increase in student achievement,” James Mangels, the district’s director of student services and personnel, told school board members during their Nov. 10 meeting in the district office conference room.
The director shared discipline data from the first quarter of the 2022-23 school year, noting that there were 31 incidents occurring at Trigg County Primary School through Oct. 7, with 55% of those due to disrespectful behavior.
At Trigg County Intermediate School, 39% of 31 incidents was due to disrespectful behavior, he said, while at Trigg County Middle School there were 108 incidents. Twenty-four of those 108 incidents were due to disorderly conduct.
Additionally, among 54 disciplinary incidents at Trigg County High School, 32 students or 5% of the TCHS student population accounted for those 54 incidents and 44% of the incidents were due to disrespectful or disruptive behavior.
In the first weeks of school, Mangels said the district has seen several drug-related incidents, two terroristic threatenings and an assault.
Citing past success at the middle school with a framework known as Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Mangels said the local district began reconnecting with that framework last year at Trigg Middle and has now applied to be part of a PBIS cohort.
PBIS provides an evidence-based, tiered approach to supporting students’ behavioral, academic, social, emotional and mental health, according to details on its website at pbis.org.
Mangels noted that the district wants to be more involved in managing behavioral health.
“We really believe that in order for students to kind of be recognized and to teach the behavior under Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports, there may be some things we can do to support students and their case plans in our classrooms,” he said, pointing out educators spend the most time with kids in the classroom.
Mangels said district staff took part in a readiness meeting to see if they “were ready to take on this challenge,” the director said.
He noted that three district staff, including himself, Special Education Director Mandy Byrd and Katie Grimm, school psychologist, were trained as district coaches for the PBIS effort.
The school district has also created a committee that includes partners from the school system and outside organizations.
Members of that district interconnected systems framework committee are counselor Alaysia Radford, George Radford of Genesis Express, parent representative Andrew Futrell, school resource officer Shawn Young, Horizon Youth Service Center Coordinator Laura Shelton, Sharon Alexander of Mountain Comprehensive Care, the three district coaches and Karen Solise, who is the school district’s assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction.
Mangels said the committee will analyze school data, identify problems and brainstorm ways to provide interventions around social, emotional and behavioral supports.
He said school staff will provide the interventions with support of the coaches; the three coaches will ensure that the interventions are carried out in each of the school buildings.
The student services director noted that behavioral health and mental health in the past were approached separately from positive behavioral interventions and supports, and he said this new approach encourages positive interventions along with mental health and behavioral health under one “big umbrella.”
Mangels said interventions implemented through the PBIS framework’s Tier 1 should “catch 80% of students in that safety net.”
He noted that 10% to 15% of students may need a more intensive approach at Tier 2, while 5% of youth may need really intensive work.
Mangels said he really believes in PBIS, in the interconnected framework and in collaborating with other services and staff to create a supportive environment for the youth.
“(There are) some really good things that are occurring,” he said of recent efforts in the district.