One month after the school shooting in Newtown, Conn., the Frankfort School District 157-C board of education discussed heightening district security measures at a meeting on Monday.
Superintendent Thomas Hurlburt said during his report that the district will be implementing a new visitor check-in system in the coming weeks, earlier than had previously been anticipated.
“Given the current events, we’ve decided to accelerate that process,” he said.
The new system, which was created by Raptor Technologies, will be introduced to day-to-day district procedures on Jan. 22, according to a press release from the district.
In order to check in, visitors will be required to scan their driver’s licenses, allowing the system to perform a short background check. They will then be issued a security clearance badge that will include their name, photo, date and time of entry and destination.
If the new system identifies a threat, district administration and law enforcement will be alerted immediately.
Previously, district visitors were required to sign a log and submit their driver’s license to building administration in order to obtain a visitor’s pass.
District parent volunteers will have the opportunity to receive their clearance badges from 1-3 p.m. on Jan. 18 at the district office, before the new system is implemented.
The board also discussed the possibility of hiring a student resource officer at Monday’s meeting.
The resource officer, who would rotate between each of the three district buildings, would be similar to a D.A.R.E. officer and might work with teachers and administrators to strengthen security procedures or with students in instances of truancy.
“I see this as being motivated more by some of the recent events,” said Board Member Mike Turner.
During the meeting, it was mentioned that New Lenox School District 122 has a resource officer.
The board will continue to discuss the possibility of adding a resource officer to the district during the coming months.
Monday’s meeting also included a conversation among the board about how much school fees should increase in the coming year.
The majority of the board supported a $10 fee increase, meaning that next year Grand Prairie Elementary students would pay $115 in school fees, Chelsea Intermediate School students would pay $120 and Hickory Creek Middle School students would pay $125.
Students receiving free lunch would automatically qualify for a fee waiver and case-by-case waivers could be issued as well.
The board will vote on whether or not to move forward with the increase in February.
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