KSCO, KPD support McIntyre's school security plan

KSCO, KPD support McIntyre's school security plan

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By MIKE KRAFCIK
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) -  Knox County leaders spent more time talking about school security.

It has been a hot topic since the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, and the problems found with security systems at Hardin Valley Academy and Powell Elementary School.

Knox County Superintendent Jim McIntyre and school board chairwoman Karen Carson shared their report in front of Knox County Commission Tuesday

McIntyre said during next month's budget hearings, he will ask for three security measures to be implanted in every school:

  • Up-to-date video security system.
  • A secure vestibule, keyless entry security, or a camera buzzer system.
  • Uniformed armed officer for every school.

Knox County Sheriff J.J. Jones and Knoxville Police Deputy Chief Gary Holliday spoke to Commissioners Tuesday in favor of McIntyre's three pronged proposal to improve school security.    

"I think our schools are safe, yes they can be safer, and I think we've laid out the roadmap to make them safer," Knox County Sheriff J.J. Jones.

"It's an on-going dialogue and collaboration and these are three strategies that we believe are really the next important steps to do everything we can to make sure we keep our kids safe in schools," McIntyre said.  

McIntyre also plans to make a recommendation to the board of education at its Mid-March meeting.

Sheriff Jones says his office has found minor security issues in schools, but most have been addressed.

"They were minor safety issues, minor. Some of the concerns they found we've already addressed," said Jones.    

The Knox County Sheriff's Office has requested 20 extra officers. Knoxville Police Department have 18 armed officers assigned to schools.  

Knox County Schools officials agreed Monday night to a launch a comprehensive review of security in the next several days.  

Dr. McIntyre will hold a school safety summit on Tuesday, March 5 with Knox County Sheriff J.J. Jones and Knoxville Police Chief David Rausch for a community forum centered on the security of the county's schools.

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