posted on December 17, 2012 15:45
In the wake of the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., schools are left with the nightmare that this could potentially happen anywhere.
Margaret Puzio, superintendent of the Batavia City School District, says it contacted the City of Batavia Police Department this morning for advisement on security reevaluation.
Puzio says most buildings in the district have at least one door open for arrival time in the morning. Once the children are in school, the doors lock on a timer. There is also a monitor-and-buzzer system in place where a visible person outside is granted permission by an electronic door lock if their purpose at the school is deemed legitimate by someone inside.
“That’s kind of similar to what was in place at the school where the shooting was on Friday,” Puzio said. “Our question and thoughts are: are there any better procedures that would create an even safer environment for students.”
Oakfield-Alabama School District Superintendent Mark Alexander echoed Puzio’s statements.
“We’re currently reviewing all of our procedures and having all of our faculty review the procedures we currently have in place,” Alexander said. “We feel that those are solid plans, but (we’re) just reviewing those and making sure they’re fresh in our minds.”
Oakfield-Alabama, like Batavia, is also utilizing local law enforcement.
“We actually had the State Troopers come in today,” Alexander said. “They were collecting information from us. They have offered to come out and do security consultations and work with us on a plan to make sure things are accurate and updated and the best that we can have.”
Puzio said the District did not field many phone calls from concerned parents, but the Oakfield-Alabama District did.
“I know that both building principals have fielded calls from parents just looking for confirmation that our procedures are in place and being followed,” Alexander said. “They’re trusting us with their most prized possession so we need to make sure that we are doing all that we can. And we are doing that here by following all of the procedures we have in place and securing our entrances and just being on heightened alert about what is happening in our buildings and around campus.”
Both Oakfield-Alabama buildings have secured entrances that open to the main office or attendant’s office. Visitors who are signed in are not allowed access to any other part of the building until they are verified and a purpose is established.
Puzio released a statement on the District’s website saying the kind of violence that occurred Friday in Newtown is extremely rare, but counselors are available for students who need additional support. The statement reads that if there are any questions, to contact your principal about building procedures.