Oak Hills planning to 'beef up' school security in pilot program - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Oak Hills 'beefing up' school security

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One of the largest school districts in the Tri-State is beefing up security.

The Oak Hills School District is investing $75,000 to update equipment inside all of their buildings. School officials say they plan to run a pilot program at Bridgetown Middle School for about a month and evaluate.

Several parents say they're happy to hear the money is going towards this type of program.

"I think you need to take as many protective measures as you can," said Marc Duebber.

It's been just a few months since the tragic events in Newtown, CT, and parents including Marc Duebber can be assured Oak Hills is doing all they can to prevent a similar disaster.

"I'm all about the kids being safer and putting the money towards what's protecting our children," said Duebber.

One of the more advanced updates will be a keyless door entry, requiring a student or faculty member's fingerprint to gain access to the building. Superintendent Todd Yohey says this is activated after all the kids enter the building in the morning.

"We think we're going to better control access to our buildings and really just make everything safer," said Yohey.

School Resource Officer Bill Murphy says they also plan to include more panic buttons, security cameras with monitors and first responder kits throughout the schools.

"If the structure can delay an intruder or bad person for those three minutes, that's three minutes that the folks inside are not fending for themselves," said Murphy.

Money for the project is coming from the school's Permanent Improvement Fund, but Yohey says finances weren't their biggest concern.

"We need to make sure that our students are safe and secure, and that parents feel safe about sending their students to our facilities," said Yohey.

School officials say the new technology was just installed at Bridgetown Middle School last week, and they plan to meet in about a month to decide whether to move forward with the remaining schools.

If the evaluation goes as planned, they hope to have this technology implemented into all the schools in the district by the start of the 2013-2014 school year.

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