Williamsville SChool Board on March 13, 2018 (WBEN Photo/Mike Baggerman)

School Safety, Camera Use Spotlighted at Williamsville School Board

Addressing school safety in wake of Stoneman Douglas shooting

Mike Baggerman
March 13, 2018 - 9:23 pm

WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. (WBEN) - The Williamsville School District addressed school safety and security during its board meeting on Tuesday.

Security at schools has become a concern in recent years due to mass shootings such as the ones that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut and, most recently, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last month.

The joint presentation was with Superintendent Scott Martzloff and Amherst Police. The school noted that school safety measures was addressed in the past. They installed security cameras in 2013 and brought their total to 276.

"Cameras aren't the whole resolution but they help," Amherst Police Chief John Askey said. "They help in our response. They not only have the cameras but we have the ability to pull those cameras up in our dispatch center. If we get a call saying there's a disturbance in the office or in the building, we're able to pull the camera up in our dispatch center and advise our officers what's going on in the room and what's going on with the individual."

That same year, additional security measures like a buzzer system at the main entrance, an ID swipe card, and increased physical safety of the school were also addressed.

Schools are mandated by New York State to conduct lockdown drills each year. Williamsville conducts approximately four lockdown drills per year in addition to eight fire drills.

The school also addressed the “run, hide, fight” mantra and discussed the emotional safety of students

The next steps for consideration for Williamsville include an SRO program for all schools, additional cameras, enhanced physical safety of the schools, increased emotional supports, a security audit, and increased professional development. 

LISTEN: Amherst Police Chief John Askey discusses Williamsville school safety with WBEN's Mike Baggerman

Williamsville Security - John Askey RAW.mp3

Williamsville Security - John Askey RAW.mp3

Williamsville Security - Presentation RAW.mp3

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