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Three Village Steps Up School Security, Won't Use Armed Guards

Board of Education asks the public for their trust and confidence that the district is doing enough to protect its students and staff.

In the wake of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School additional security measures have been established in Three Village schools, according to the Board of Education, which also said in a statement on Tuesday that the district won't use armed security guards in its schools.

In a lengthy statement delivered by board president Dr. Jeffrey Kerman, the district said it had already completed a comprehensive review of its safety and security procedures prior to the events of Dec. 14 in Newtown, Connecticut.

"This profound tragedy has brought to light issues of vulnerability and has caused school districts across our country to re-examine security and safety procedures and protocols," the statement reads. "Three Village has been and is continuing to assess the infrastructure of our buildings and technology, reinforcing the safety of our facilities, and strengthening security measures and processes."

The Board also responded to the NRA's statement that armed guards should be present in schools.

"We do not support this position," the Board said in its statement. "While we maintain an excellent and collaborative relationship with our local police force and welcome their presence in and around our schools, we do not believe that arming our security personnel is a prudent decision."

However, at least one resident at Tuesday's school board meeting said he believes that armed security guards in the schools should be used. Thomas May, a retired New York City firefighter, said he feels the benefit of having armed guards in schools would outweigh any general risk posed by having firearms in the schools.

"An armed police officer in the school, a retired police officer, I think is the best defense. Someone who can at least slow down a perpetrator in the school," May said. "...To me a security guard without a firearm is useless."

"I really think you’ve got the best trained security force already in your school district, except they’re unarmed," he added.

According to the school board, the following measures have been implemented recently or in response to Sandy Hook:

  • The doors of all elementary schools and junior high schools will be locked after arrival in the morning.
  • Buzzers are being installed in every building. Visitors and staff who are re-entering the building must be buzzed in and show photo identification.
  • At Ward Melville HS, security guards are stationed at all three open entrances to the school, and visitors must show photo identification.
  • Security guards will be stationed at all five elementary schools.
  • The district will establish a Director of Security position to be paid for by the monies obtained through the recent management efficiency grant.
  • More than 200 security cameras had already been put in place prior to this school year.
  • Lockdown and lockout drills will be practiced unannounced at each building.
  • Continued training and staff development for all district faculty and staff.

On Wednesday, assistant superintendent Jeff Carlson said the disrtict is also readying to work with an outside company on improving security protocols.

"What we've asked for is companies to give us proposals, give us some ideas," he said. "We'll see what they come up with."

The Board of Education also said additional security measures are in place that cannot be discussed publicly due to the sensitive nature of the system.

"While there will be changes in our security systems and protocols that may be obvious and those that we will openly share with the public, there are other security and safety measures that we cannot acknowledge, as providing this information to the public will attenuate our security protocols and jeopardize the safety of our students, staff and visitors," the Board said in the statement. "We ask for your trust and confidence, recognizing that our intentions are to create school environments that place safety as a top priority."

For the complete statement from the school board regarding security, refer to the PDF attached to this article.

Stony Brook Resident January 09, 2013 at 11:46 PM
Great idea. Make sure you ask the person you are buzzing in to show ID before they shoot someone. How about NO ONE is allowed into the school at all. If meetings with parents are needed, they are done after hours or at North Country. If a student is sick, the name of the person picking up the child should be left at security and the name verified before they are let in. Hire a veteran who served our country who cannot find a job to stand ARMED and ready at the security desk. That's protecting our children.
LivingSmall January 10, 2013 at 04:08 AM
Students at the JHS and HS level receive ID cards -- why not issue a family ID card to complement the student ID (or in the case of elementary school students, is the only ID) which is magnetized/encrypted which needs to be swiped and PIN verified to unlock the door? Then once again at security show ID?
EG January 10, 2013 at 12:44 PM
So we should feel comfortable that our district is increasing security to almost the security standard that Sandy Hook had? What's an unarmed ID checker going to do if an armed lunatic enters the school? Beg? Act as a human shield? Press the runaway and hide button? This gun free school zone crap is a failed gun control experiment gone tragically wrong and it needs to end. The first responsibility of our District is to make sure our kids are safe and they can only be safe with armed security. The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun, is a good guy with a gun. Gathering up hundreds of kids everyday and putting them all on a few unprotected acres and announcing to the world that they are vulnerable is a recipe for disaster. Is it really that hard to figure out? For the record, when I went to Ward Melville, the security guards were off duty cops and they carried.
Setauketmom January 10, 2013 at 04:12 PM
I moved to the district for the framed 3VSCD and I couldn't be more disappointed in our decision. Our Board of Education is a complete joke of regular parents with no administrative, security and/or teaching training or education. We are at fault for electing them along with the teachers who follow the lead of the district delegate to elect those to keep teachers salaries rising ect. Did anyone ever look into who are board of education is made of? Did they consult a security firm to keep our kids safe? What did they do to make necessary changes to prevent the safety of our kids? You really think showing Id (which btw, is simply viewed at and not even written down, looked at a parent list.. Nothing) going to protect our kids anymore? They buzz everyone in and if all doors are secure why are teachers using emergency exits to leave and not the main doors? Security guards are present...wow! I wish the BOE tells me how a 60+ yo overweight man is going to protect our kids? I really came here for the district and I am seriously considering relocation and taking my $19k annual taxes with me! Protect our kids? Ha, they have failed our kids, failed our teachers and parents and the BOE is to blame. Next elections, we should elect qualified individuals that will do whatever it takes to make sure our kids make it home to us everyday. I'm disguised...
C. Bery January 13, 2013 at 10:32 PM
The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun! Armed security is the only way to go -

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