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home : local news : local news

12/21/2012 1:17:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
Unit 10 school board looks at security issues
BRIDGEPORT - For the second time this week, a Lawrence County school district, in the wake of the Connecticut school shootings, addressed security issues.

On Monday, the Unit 20 board looked into strengthening securing and at its monthly meeting Thursday evening, Red Hill Unit 10 school officials reported that the district is reviewing its security and safety policies and protocols.

Board President Bob Christy said the district "will remain proactive" when it comes to security with school officials always looking for ways to make the school environment safer for students.

All three Unit 10 attendance centers - Red Hill Junior/Senior High School, Sumner Attendance Center and Bridgeport Grade School - are locked when school begins. Each school uses a single entry point with cameras and audio equipment to see and hear potential visitors.

Superintendent Matt Seaton said entrance into the buildings are going to be closely scrutinized.

"We are going to have an intensive review of our practices, our procedures, for checking in visitors, for screening visitors at the door before we let them in," Seaton said. "And just make sure that stuff doesn't become too routine; that we just automatically hit that button to buzz people in without really making sure who we're letting in first."

Seaton noted that some additional security measure have already been taken.

"Some of our parents are going to get notifications about some of the different times that our doors are going to be open and locked in the mornings and some entrances that we're going to secure in the morning (and afternoon) that have traditionally been open in our district," Seaton said. 

School officials have accepted an offer of assistance from law enforcement and are hoping for a police presence.

"We have been approached by the Lawrence County Sheriff's Department and they have asked, and volunteered, to be more of a presence in our buildings and to make regular walk-throughs and make unannounced visits and spend some time in our buildings, which is very nice of them," Seaton said. "We do get considerable support from the Sumner Police Department and the Bridgeport Police Chief, so we're very grateful for that."

Seaton said a lot of schools have the benefit of having school security officers in the buildings. "That's something we've never been able to financially make happen. Any support we can get from local law enforcement is greatly appreciated."

Complete story can be found Friday's Daily Record print edition


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