INDIANAPOLIS – One local school district is increasing safety protocols for its students.
The Perry Township School Board just approved the installation of a new weapons detection device system for the high schools. This includes Southport High School and Perry Meridian High School.
Some students said they are a little hesitant about these changes.
“I don’t know but it’ll definitely be something to get used to,” said Gretchen Turner, a rising senior at Southport High School.
“I think there will be lines and everyone will freak out about it,” said Noah Daniel, a rising senior at Southport High School.
These are just a few of the initial thoughts from two Southport High School students on the new weapons detection system. It will impact how students come in and out of the school doors each day.
“The building is already brick, and dark, and dreary enough and adding metal detectors, it makes it seems more like a prison,” Daniel said.
On Monday, the Perry Township School Board approved the installation of seven single-lane and four dual-lane Motorola Concealed Weapons Detection Devices.
Students simply walk through the device and it will only go off if it detects a weapon which officials can see on provided IPads.
“[We want] to be proactive to keep our campuses safe and secure for our students and for our staff,” said Chris Sampson, the associate superintendent of Perry Township Schools.
School leaders said there have not been any incidents where a weapon was found inside one of the schools. Still, they feel this extra step of precaution is needed.
“I think we would be fools to turn a blind eye to what goes on in our neighborhoods and in our community here in Marion County,” Sampson said. “This is probably the next step for us as we have integrated security devices and methods within our district over the last seven years.”
The principal at Southport High School, who is also a parent, said he is in support of the change.
“I think as a parent, I am not necessarily fearful when my kids go to schools but I definitely understand that we live in a world where things happen and I think this is something that can help us support our schools and help us support our kids to feel safe when they come,” said Brian Knight, principal at Southport High School.
Even though the initial feeling may have been fear from some students, they said in the long run it will be a good thing for their school to have these new safety measures in place.
“It’s sort of the cliche phrase, ‘I would rather be safe than sorry,’” Turner said. “I am impressed with our schools just getting a jump start on this before we have to.”
The installation of the new weapons detection systems will happen in mid-late September of this year. It is expected to cost just under $1.5 million.