KENT: Kent schools Superintendent Joseph Giancola is considering new ways to ensure student safety.
Some concerns about safety precautions were discussed during a school board meeting Tuesday night at Franklin Elementary school.
Parents raised concerns about whether students may be at risk during outdoors activities, such as students who are part of the safety patrol.
Giancola said he has made suggestions that include limiting recess and activities like safety patrol because students are more vulnerable outside, but said the community typically frowns on such limitations.
A strategic planning committee is looking at security in the district and plans to meet with security experts to see what other areas should be explored.
“All of our buildings are in lockdown mode,” Giancola said. “The buildings are locked and the parents have to ring a doorbell, and the secretaries have to make a decision whether to let someone in or not.”
Giancola said the staff is now in the midst of training exercises to be better prepared to handle emergencies.
He would like to see more money set aside for security, including cameras at every doorway at the school that would be monitored by a school resource officer.
“The person would be licensed, trained and practiced in using deadly force if needed,” Giancola said.
He said he is not in favor of having non-police officers with guns inside schools.
“Any of you who have ever done any hunting or served in the Army know that handling any type of weapon takes more than two weeks’ training to be able to use it properly,” Giancola said.