SOS Parkland has been very busy! We have been speaking with and meeting with various providers of school security products and services including SOS button and other security apps, ballistic shelters, school security assessors, locking systems, perimeter security measures, sensors, and various other high-tech school security solutions.
It is important to understand that school security is a very complex issue and what may seem like an obvious answer or quick fix, rarely is. SOS Parkland is taking a very measured approach to working out these solutions as none of us can afford any mistakes when it comes to security. Since we all want this done immediately, or sooner, we think it appropriate to shed some light on the process and estimated timeline that we are working with. It is also important to note that nothing can be done in any of our public schools without the direct and explicit approval of Broward County Public Schools (BCPS). BCPS has their own approval and permitting process which must be complied with regardless of who is paying for the improvements.
• Acquire approval to use a highly qualified 3rd party, independent K12 security assessor (“SA”).
• SA will complete an assessment of each school.
• SA will make a full report of what is needed to secure the schools and deliver that to BCPS*.
• Once the report is complete, we will work with the District, the schools, and PTAs, PTO, and PTSA to fund the SA’s recommended security improvements.
* Because the report will contain sensitive information about security, protocols, and recommendations, under Department of Homeland Security restrictions, specific details of the report cannot be made public as that would compromise school security.
Regarding the timeline, we expect and hope that the approval to move forward with the assessments will come in the next week. If so, the assessment should be completed within a few weeks after that (before the end of the school year). Some school security measures that can be funded immediately will be. Larger security enhancements will be completed as funding allows. It is also important to note that BCPS, the individual schools, and other organizations will be implementing and funding other security improvements, separate from ones that we may fund and they will have their own timelines.