Not surprisingly, in the wake of the Connecticut mass shooting that occurred on Friday, school districts around the nation are taking a closer look at how they are securing their campuses. Here's an overview of what some districts are considering.
Officials in Medford, Natick, and Boston said they would increase security immediately, and several schools said they would review their procedures, reports the Boston Globe.
In Natick, Mass., the front door of each school will be locked, and personnel will be positioned at the entrances.
In Medford, Mass., police and security staff will be present on Monday. Additionally, the district will be upgrading its video surveillance and access control systems.
In Cambridge, Mass., school staff and teachers will meet with parents to help them address the questions their children may have about the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting. In Arlington, and Lexington, Mass., counselors will be on hand for students, and police will patrol the neighborhoods.
Officials in Passaic Valley, N.J., are also reevaluating their school’s security, reports NorthJersey.com. Little Falls Police met with school officials over the weekend, noting a school resource officer is at the high school and they practice drills and have a security system in place.
In Totowa, N.J., officials are looking at installing bullet-proof glass and metal doors, as well as placing police officers at two of the schools during the lunch hour. The district already has a security officer on site, as well as security cameras and a key-card system.
Woodland, N.J., police also plan to review their school security measures, including how campuses manage visitors, although they already have police patrols and practice evacuation and lockdown drills.
Additional police patrols are planned for Fairfax County (Va.) Public Schools, as well as for schools in Hillsborough County, Fla., reports NPR. In Maryland, Montgomery County Public Schools have made counselors available for students. Tucson, Ariz., schools are doing the same.
In Milford, Conn., police will be present in all school buildings this week, and all visitors to schools will need to schedule an appointment, reports the Milford Patch. Additionally, school administrators and school committee members will be more visible in the buildings. Crisis counselors will available.
In Connecticut, State Police Lt. J. Paul Vance said all school safety plans are being reevaluated. Texas Gov. Rick Perry is also calling for a review of his state's school safety plans, as is California's Superintendent of Public Instruction, Thom Torlakson.
Nationally, President Barack Obama called for "meaningful action" that would prevent other tragedies like what occurred at Sandy Hook. Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut called for a national commission on violence.
Robin Hattersley Gray is the executive editor of Campus Safety Magazine, a sister publication of POLICE Magazine.
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