Quantcast

The cost of providing safe schools - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

The cost of providing safe schools

Updated:
SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. -

Heading into South Burlington's Tuttle Middle School means you'll be captured on camera and you'll need to sign in.  

"We have a security guard, you have to check in, you have to indicate as to what you're here for," said school Principal Karsten Schlenter. This make-shift security station comes on the heals of the Sandy Hook Shooting and is a temporary setup as the school awaits a new buzzer system for its front door. "The schools were constructed -- obviously -- at a time where this wasn't a concern; safety was not under the radar of most people," she said

The Vermont Principals' Association Executive Director Ken Page said some schools have more work to do than others. "All Schools, when it comes to safety, are not equal -- I mean it is easier to get into some than others," he said

Page is sharing suggestions for improvements from his members. They include taking advantage of school safety audits from the Vermont School Board Insurance Trust and urging lawmakers to either make exceptions to Vermont's moratorium on school construction for safety improvements, or to find other ways to fund them. "What I've said is that it would be really good at least if they opened up some avenues for people to apply for some safety monies," Page said.

Also on the list is the need for strong communication between school divisions and community first responders, as well as appropriate notification about individuals who may pose potential threats because of mental health challenges. He's also urging schools to invest in two-way radios -- something Page estimates already exist in 90-percent of Vermont high schools.
"A principal can get on and call for help and either a number of people can come running or they can call 911," he said.

Karsten Schlenter said ongoing training for teachers and security drills are also key. "We want to welcome parents and the community here yet, you know, we do have the task to make sure that it is done in a safe way," she said.

Schlenter admits finding that balance is tough.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Sen. Jim Jeffords to be laid to rest

    Sen. Jim Jeffords to be laid to rest

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:51 AM EDT2014-08-22 14:51:48 GMT
    Former U.S. Sen. Jim Jeffords will be laid to rest in Rutland today.
    Former U.S. Sen. Jim Jeffords will be laid to rest in Rutland today.
  • Vt. police say all clear in Newport

    Vt. police say all clear in Newport

    Friday, August 22 2014 11:12 AM EDT2014-08-22 15:12:45 GMT
    Police say the threat is over in Newport. Thursday night, police had asked residents to lock their doors and stay inside while authorities searched for a gunman.
    Police say the threat is over in Newport. Thursday night, police had asked residents to lock their doors and stay inside while authorities searched for a gunman.
  • Police: Couple wanted 2 Amish girls for slaves

    Police: Couple wanted 2 Amish girls for slaves

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:35 AM EDT2014-08-22 14:35:33 GMT
    An investigator says a northern New York couple kidnapped two Amish sisters from their family farm stand with a plan to turn them into slaves but released them after becoming frightened by news reports.
    An investigator says a northern New York couple kidnapped two Amish sisters from their family farm stand with a plan to turn them into slaves but released them after becoming frightened by news reports.
  • Wire fraud convict has until Friday to object

    Wire fraud convict has until Friday to object

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:29 AM EDT2014-08-22 14:29:05 GMT
    A Vermont man convicted of wire fraud for submitting false invoices to a Maine town has reached the end of his allotted time to file objections to a pre-sentencing reporting.
    A Vermont man convicted of wire fraud for submitting false invoices to a Maine town has reached the end of his allotted time to file objections to a pre-sentencing reporting.
  • Parents had hoped to negotiate with Foley captors

    Parents had hoped to negotiate with Foley captors

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:56 AM EDT2014-08-22 14:56:11 GMT
    The parents of slain journalist James Foley say they regarded an email they received from his captors last week as a hopeful sign they could negotiate with Islamic militants.
    The parents of slain journalist James Foley say they regarded an email they received from his captors last week as a hopeful sign they could negotiate with Islamic militants.
  • Slaying of NH journalist reopens debate on ransoms

    Slaying of NH journalist reopens debate on ransoms

    Friday, August 22 2014 11:04 AM EDT2014-08-22 15:04:15 GMT
    By rejecting demands for a nine-digit payment to save kidnapped American journalist James Foley, the United States upheld a policy choice that some European and Arab governments have long found too wrenching to...
    By rejecting demands for a nine-digit payment to save kidnapped American journalist James Foley, the United States upheld a policy choice that some European and Arab governments have long found too wrenching to make...
  • Pope calls family of slain American journalist

    Pope calls family of slain American journalist

    Friday, August 22 2014 11:08 AM EDT2014-08-22 15:08:25 GMT
    Pope Francis has called the family of an American journalist whose videotaped beheading by Islamic State militants has touched off torrents of outrage around the world.
    Pope Francis has called the family of an American journalist whose videotaped beheading by Islamic State militants has touched off torrents of outrage around the world.
  • Ousted Montpelier planner granted new hearing

    Ousted Montpelier planner granted new hearing

    Friday, August 22 2014 10:20 AM EDT2014-08-22 14:20:54 GMT
    The former city planning director in Montpelier who lost her job last year after a publicized struggle with other city officials has been granted a near hearing on the matter.
    The former city planning director in Montpelier who lost her job last year after a publicized struggle with other city officials has been granted a near hearing on the matter.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WCAX. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.