Officials Discuss Proposals for School Safety Changes - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Officials Discuss Proposals for School Safety Changes


LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) - Safety in schools is front and center for many on Tuesday, after lawmakers consider changing how schools can spend their "sinking funds" for more building security. "Sinking funds" are usually reserved for building construction or repairs, not security purposes. Under current law, schools cannot hire guards with the money, but the bill that will be introduced is expected to clarify what schools can spend the dollars on, which could include security guards.

Okemos High School is just one of the schools in the area increasing its security. Over the winter break, officials installed a total of nine new cameras, bringing the campus camera total to 15. Officials say those cameras are recording what's going on inside and outside the school 24/7.

Michigan Association of School Administrators Executive Director William Mayes supports expanding how schools spend "sinking funds," but doesn't believe it should be limited to just building security locks and systems.

"We feel it sould be expanded to allow for technological and for transportation use and security use. Making sure students have safe buses is equally important as making sure we have security cameras," he says.

Mayes says there's no band-aid you can put on school security and that it'll take a comprehensive plan to make schools safer like "beefing up mental health, beefing up relationships with the police department and having a plan when a security problem enters a school."

This is all being proposed in the aftermath of the Newtown Connecticut School Shooting.

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