Grand Forks Considers New, Major School Security System - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Grand Forks Considers New, Major School Security System

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  We’ve all heard far too many stories about violence and shootings in our schools in recent times. Now, plans are underway that could make Grand Forks Schools, some of the most secure in the region.

  The District’s “Safety and Security Committee” will likely recommend to the School Board, a new security system for all 18 of its schools.
  On Monday, Wilder Elementary School went under a short lock down, after a drunk man entered the school, fell and struck his head. School staff immediately saw the man entering the school and called police. No one other than the drunk guy was injured.

  But now, administrators at Grand Forks Schools are talking about taking security to a whole new level. It’s called, “Video-push to Talk”.

Jerry Jonnson, GF Head Start: “If it’s locked, you just come right here and push this button and talk to the office. We hear the buzzer and they free the door so it can open and come in.”

  A working system is already installed at the Head Start school. Receptionists can see people at the door via a camera system, talk to them and buzz them in. The system is turned off for half an hour at the beginning of the school day to accommodate all the parents and students. The School’s staff uses swipe cards to enter the building

 Parents I spoke with say it’s a great system.

Reporter: “Would you like to see this in all the schools?”

Christina Klaers, Parent: “I would. I would. I’d feel more safe having my children in school.”

  Administrators say they don’t have an estimated price tag yet. They’ll have to get bids.

  The actual technology won’t be that expensive since their own staff can install it. The main cost will come from installing secure entryways at all the schools.  

 Jody Thompson, Asst. Supt. GF Schools: “Well, I think we’re to the point that we will probably bring it as an option for the Board to consider. Obviously it’s a budgetary issue for us as well. But, I think it’s something that we, our Committee believes would improve safety in each of our individual schools.

  Thompson says that proposal for a new security system will likely be brought to the school board in July.

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