Greater Clark makes big changes in school security - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Greater Clark makes big changes in school security

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JEFFERSONVILLE, IND. (WDRB) -- The Greater Clark School District is revamping security measures after Friday's mass shooting in Connecticut. Now, it will be harder for visitors to gain access into schools. The school district is spending a big chunk of change to purchase technology that will make the schools safer.

Only a handful of the district's schools have a camera system to buzz visitors in. After Friday's mass shooting in Connecticut, school leaders sped up plans to install the remaining 15 units -- costing $18,000. "If you walk up we're going to make sure we ask you who you are, why you're visiting your building, may ask to show identification over the camera," said Chris Ralston, school safety specialist.

The units will be installed over the winter break and may be a big change for parents. "It's always been a pretty open community of, we know you, come on in, we know your child. I think it's going to be everyone needs to expect, please have an identification ready, please tell us why you're here," said Parkview Middle SChool principal, Amy Hasselbring.

Parents will need to give notice when visiting. "For conferences and appointments instead of just kind of showing up in the building we'd like parents to call ahead and schedule things so we're prepared for them to enter the building," said Hasselbring.

Teachers in Greater Clark have always had to keep their doors closed, but now they will have to keep them locked while students are in class, too.

"If we already have that done throughout the school day every day, that's one more step that doesn't have to take place. We've already saved time in our response to someone coming into our building that may want to do harm," said Ralston.

Greater Clark school leaders came together Monday night to improve current safety plans after 20 children and six adults were killed inside Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. "Anytime we have a large event like this, it's one of the things we immediately do is we gather as much information as possible and make sure that we look at our plans and make sure we have things covered based on what that incident brought about," added Ralston.

Superintendent Doctor Andrew Melin sent out an automated call to parents to let them know about the changes, which also include more police presence. Each school must run through a lock down drill before the end of the year.

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