School safety suggestions from Henrico parents now online - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

School safety suggestions from Henrico parents now online

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) -

$400,000 is going into better safety measures at Henrico County schools. A forum a few weeks ago gave school leaders a better of idea of what parents want. 

The county is listening - now on the Henrico Public Schools website, there is list of parent recommendations when it comes to safety.

Access is the biggest concern.

Parents say focusing on the entrances and exits of a campus is the first step in finding solutions to make schools safer.

Enhancements right now include key pad entry systems and enclosed entrances for Hermitage and Highland Springs high schools.

Knowing who is on campus and when was once a concern for the Craft family.

"Before people were accessing multiple doors on the backside of the school," says Michael Craft, he's a father of three children.  His oldest daughter and son go to Dumbarton Elementary School.  He says updated security measures help.

Just a few years ago, Dumbarton was a more open campus. Now, Craft says nobody can pass by without administrators seeing them first.

"They have a big glass windows out front so they're able to see everybody, and they have locks and a buzz in to get in too," he said.

Craft hopes other schools will follow this example and he's not the only parent who feels the same way.

An eight page report outlines what other parents want. School leaders put it together after listening to a packed auditorium during the county's first safety forum last month.

Concerns include: visitors bypassing the school office and entering campus.

Some people suggested using parent volunteers to patrol campus, increasing security cameras and some people even suggested arming and training staff to handle guns or tasers.

School leaders say the community's recommendations are under consideration as long as it complies with Virginia laws.

Copyright 2013 WWBT NBC12.  All rights reserved.

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