RUTHERFORD COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — Last year, Patty Oeser was the main person responsible for the safety of students at schools across Rutherford County.

But now she’s got some help.

“She called me and said, ‘hey, we would like to offer you the position,’ and here I am,” said Sean Martin.

Martin is the district’s new assistant safety director tasked with helping Oeser improve school safety.

“I spent 16 years in law enforcement,” he said.

Martin previously was an SRO sergeant for the Murfreesboro Police Department, bringing a unique perspective to this role.

“There are behavior issues that we see in schools every day and the SROs play such a pivotal part with the administrators, the principals, the assistant principals and they kind of lend that support from the law enforcement hand,” he said.

Martin has two big items he wants to focus on in this role. The first is keeping school buildings secure.

“[I want to] make sure that our doors are locked, our interior doors are locked in case of an event that happens and we have to close those doors,” he said.

His second focus is students’ mental health.

“I think you have to take in concepts of bullying, [and] social media bullying,” said Martin.

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Martin is a certified mental health first aid instructor who wants to use his skills to help fix this issue impacting their school system.

“I just think we need to expand upon that and just make that a primary focus,” he said. “That is one of Patty and I’s visions is to continue to push that forward.”

Martin is only a few weeks in, but he’s optimistic and open to hearing from his community about ways the district can continue to keep students safe.

“I will gladly talk to whoever would like to talk, and we can try to see what we can do to help,” he said.

Martin says he and Oeser are working on a new plan to help reunite students and their parents in the event of a school emergency.

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He also says they are working on a new clear bag policy for those attending athletic events they hope to roll out later in the fall.