Our most recent poll, on school safety officers, showed a sharp split in Insideschools' online community -- 37 percent of parents said they understood and appreciated why school safety officers are in the schools, while nearly as many, 33 percent, said they'd prefer schools without safety officers at all. The Student Safety Actwas taken up by the City Council some months ago yet seems moored in committeefor the present, despite the urgency of the issue and the lack of clarity on safety officer supervision.

This week, however, the conversation around "keeping students safe" has been focused on swine flu. The issue has dominated the news landscape, with 24/7 coverage that we worry may add more fuel to the fires of anxiety than real substance to this important conversation. Still, we wonder what readers think about strategies to contain or prevent infection -- and what the Department of Education should do, going forward, if the outbreak continues in our area.

Take the poll, share your thoughts, and remember: Wash your hands.