New Year, new security

New Year, new security

Mrs. Dena Werner works on the computer during school.

A new security “lockdown” has recently been put into place at OHS to make the school more safe and secure. During school hours, all exterior doors are now locked from the outside.  Around 6:45 and 7:20 a.m., however, the Gym A foyer doors, the front doors, and the side handicap doors on the north end are open for students to enter.

“The goal is to make this place more secure and harder for outsiders to get in,” said Assistant Principal Mr. Jim Kern.

In addition, teachers on their conference period during blocks three and seven take shifts watching over the cafeteria and hallways on the first and second floors to prevent students trying to get outside the school. 25 cameras are also being added around the area.

“Anytime you can add a deterrent… it’s going to make it just a little safer” said Officer Andrew, OHS’s School Resource Officer (SRO). “The whole point is school safety.”

Concerns among administrators and parents really sprouted after the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

“Public perception became more aware after the shooting” Kern said.

The shooting was so much different because it was an elementary school, but Andrew says he is a “firm believer that this stuff can happen anywhere.”

As a result, OHS is looking at their security and what can make it better. Despite the difficulties it may cause for extra curricular activities and classes such as P.E., a buzzer for the front doors and back door is being put into place.

“Some people think it’s good, and others feel restrained,” said Kern. “But this will help people feel more safe.”

The “lockdown” will remain for the rest of this school year, and according to Kern the system will be reevaluated every year following.

“I feel that we do have a safe school, and now it’s even safer,” said Kern. “It keeps getting safer and more secure.”