Ferndale Public Schools elementary schools may get upgraded security features sooner than previously planned as school officials continue discussions in response to the tragic school shooting in Newtown, Conn.
Ferndale Schools Superintendent Gary Meier said Monday that certain security updates are already planned district-wide as part of the $22.8 million school bond passed in February.
This includes implementing an electronic latch/buzzer system at all schools in which all entrances would be locked during school hours and a staff member would screen and buzz in visitors, he said.
Those upgrades were planned during the bond planning process to "ensure the highest level of security possible," Meier said.
The updates weren't scheduled to take place until about 2014, but in light of the tragic events in Newtown, Conn., Meier said the district is looking to move the security plans forward now, at least at the elementary school level.
"That's a conversation that we're beginning to have," he said.
Details of how the system would work in each school are not yet available and a timeline has not been set. Meier said at Monday's school board meeting that he believes it can be done "relatively soon."
Meier wrote a letter to parents on Friday in response to the shooting and said he met with Ferndale Police Chief Tim Collins on Monday to review school security. Meier also said the district has extensive emergency plans and procedures, which are continually reviewed.