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Tightened School Security, But Little Detail

January 23, 2013, 6:00 PM by Peggy Moyer

Tightened School Security, But Little Detail

The Sioux Falls School District moves up plans to tighten security at its 35 buildings.

The district had planned to increase security measures within the district over the next few years as it remodeled buildings.

However, school board member Kent Alberty said the school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in December was absolutely a catalyst for the district to move on those plans now.

The Sioux Falls school board recently approved a measure making nearly $7 million available to improve security.

"Having the buildings as safe and as secure as we can possibly make them is really our number one priority next to educating the students," Alberty said.

Alberty is a member of the district's Safe and Secure Schools Committee. Streamlining access into the district's buildings is a top priority. But when it comes to talking publicly about measures like installing bullet-proof glass or security cameras, the district is being tight-lipped, citing student and staff safety.

"Those are the things I think we need to not tell every perpetrator where a camera would be, if we were going to put them in. I'm not going to tell you where we have them now or don't," Alberty said.

When it comes to beefing up security, Alberty is not a fan of a bill before state lawmakers that would allow teachers and administrators to carry guns.

"I think the legislature isn't using its best judgment if they are spending time talking about, 'What ifs'. I think we need to not over react as a society to the Sandy Hook tragedy and pass laws that are passed on emotion, not on very well thought out, clear-cut, good decision making," Alberty said.

Alberty would personally be in favor of adding more uniformed school resource officers citing their training to use the weapons.

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