Anderson Co. creates security task force for safety concerns

Anderson County creates security task force for school safety concerns

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Anderson County School Board and Anderson County Commission members passed a joint resolution to create a security task force. Anderson County School Board and Anderson County Commission members passed a joint resolution to create a security task force.

By ALEXIS ZOTOS
6 News Reporter

CLINTON (WATE) – In an auditorium filled with concerned parents, school board members and county commissioners, Anderson County School's Safety Director Joe Fogerty outlined current and future security measures for the school system.

"We've got a great school system and we have a safe school, but like everything else it always has room for improvement and room for adjusting and tweaking. The more we can do to keep our schools safer the better," Fogerty said.

Fogerty outlined the current security measures in place at the schools, including eight armed school resource officers and an armed DARE officer among the district's 18 schools. Camera systems are also in place at several of the schools.

Additional safety plans in the works include identification badges for every staff member in the district. Teachers, faculty and even bus drivers will have to wear an ID.

A current project also includes detailed emergency response plans for all 18 schools. They include detailed floor plans and evacuation plans that will be in one centralized database for law enforcement.

"It's all in one spot so if we have an emergency where it's needed, they're not going to be trying to gather up all this information. We've got it , it's at our finger tips, it's in our patrol cars, it's at our 911 center. Then it's there for our emergency first responders to use," he explained.

After the safety presentation, Anderson County School Board and Anderson County Commission members passed a joint resolution to create a security task force. It will be led by Fogerty and include members of law enforcement to help create the best course of action.

Fogerty said the key is to use the school district's resources in the best way, whether that is a one-time expenditure such as door buzzer systems or a reoccurring expense such as additional SROs.

They will also invite Clinton city schools and Oak Ridge city schools to participate in the task force.

The task force will come up with a recommendation in six to eight weeks to present to the school board and commission.

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