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PARKLAND (CBSMiami) – Concerned residents were given an opportunity to have their voices heard as school safety remains a major issue in South Florida.
At a town hall meeting in North Miami on Wednesday, Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie discussed a number of school security measures in light of last month’s mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas and the alarming incidents over the past couple of days involving knives on campus and a deputy accused of sleeping on the job.
“We’re going to be able to man every gate at the school during school hours and for after school activities. We will be implementing a program for clear backpacks after spring break. We are also going to funnel students and visitors to confined points and wand folks, like you’d see in airports and so forth,” said Runcie.
Earlier in the day, Runcie issued a letter outlining safety and security measures that are “ongoing” and some “to be completed.”
He discussed these details at the town hall.
“We’ve got to put things into place now. Some of the things we’re doing now is making sure we have good habits in school and are enforcing protocols we already have in place. Single point of entries and making sure the gates are always closed. Make sure that classroom doors are always locked. Make sure the people that are actually monitoring the campus, are doing so with a high degree of vigilance. Every school in broward by the end of this year, but no later than the first quarter of 2019, will eventually have single point entry. We’re upgrading cameras and security systems. That will done by June of this year. We’re continuing code red training, which we do at all our schools. That is the foundation of active shooters. We are enhancing that for middle and high schools,” said Runcie.
Extra security was on hand at Stoneman Douglas after one student was committed for psychological evaluation and another two arrested for allegedly bringing knives to school.
Jordan Salter, 18, walked out of the Broward County jail after being arrested for allegedly bringing a knife to school Tuesday.
She didn’t speak but her father defended her to CBS4 News earlier in the day.
“She brought the knife to protect herself Parkland is not protecting them 17 kids died. We are forcing her to face her fears get out and go to school she decided to go to school so she decided you know what I’m going to protect myself because no one is there to protect me,” said Scott Salter, Jordan’s father.
Come Thursday morning FHP troopers will supplement the Broward Sheriff’s Office deputies who are there along with these guarding angels.
Governor Rick Scott tweeted, “FHP will be deploying eight troopers to Marjory Stoneman Douglas. We will stop at nothing to protect our schools and security.”
“It’s a good thing. I feel more safe,” said 11th grader Juan Sanchez.
“I think we need to do as much as we can to protect the school,” said Dana Catapano, a parent.
“That’s a little obsessive. It’s too much. We just don’ need them,” said Aliyah Vazquez.
Students and their parents are both troubled by news that BSO Deputy Moises Carotti has been suspended with pay after he reportedly fell asleep in his patrol unit after school had let out.
Sheriff Scott Israel released a statement saying, “Every single deputy will be held accountable for his or her actions and any failure to protect the public will not be tolerated. No one expects more from our agency’s public safety personnel than I do.”