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How Schools Are Meeting The Demand For Greater Security

School Bus Children
Rodrigo Abd

In the wake of school shootings such as Parkland and Sandy Hook, one Connecticut school district has hired armed security guards to protect students.

Regional School District 10 serves the towns of Burlington and Harwinton in Litchfield County.

District Superintendent Alan Beitman said since the area is very rural, town police wouldn’t be able to respond to an active shooter situation in time.

The eight armed guards began working in September.

“We were fortunate to be able to hire retired state troopers and retired municipal police to serve as our security guards. They were coming to us having served in good standing for 20-25, 30 years as police officers, many of rank sergeants, lieutenants, captains...”

Beitman said the response from the community has been “overwhelmingly positive.”

On Long Island, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said a new smartphone-based emergency alert app is now being used in 90 percent of the county’s schools.

It was launched at the start of the school year to help respond to active shooter situations.

Bellone signed legislation for a $2 million bond covering the cost of the app back in July.

“We felt it was important for the county to take the lead in investing the resources necessary to provide this public safety resource to our school districts. That’s exactly why we put that bond forward, and made this available to every one of our schools in the county.”

Bellone said with one touch the app alerts police dispatch of an active shooter. It also allows for communication between police and those inside the building.