School Polling Places to Increase Security in Me. District
An increased police presence will be used to maintain school security on Election Day.
A school district in Maine announced it will upgrade security measures at the school buildings that will double as polling places for the presidential election.
Members of a school committee for the Auburn School District say there will be an increased police presence at the four school buildings where people will vote Nov. 8, according to wcsh6.com.
The committee held a meeting with law enforcement officials to discuss the security plans for what is expected to be an emotional day.
The committee voted 6-1 to keep the schools open during polling, although School Committee Chairman Thomas Kendall says this year is the first time the committee was deeply concerned with security.
“I’ve lived in Auburn all my life and I’ve never had an occasion where you’ve had the polarization within the two parties and things, that would have raised this level of concern for anyone”, Kendall says.
In the end, an agreement with local law enforcement agencies that ensured multiple officers will be at each school was enough for members to allow classes to continue. The committee says parents who don’t feel comfortable sending their children to school during the vote can inform schools and their children will receive an excused absence.
Auburn Deputy Police Chief Jason Moen says the nature of this year’s election doesn’t change much from his department’s perspective.
“[The added officer presence] is basically just to maintain that sense of security for the students,” Moen says. “They have a lot of strangers coming into the building and we want to make sure they have a nice, safe day.”
With an unusually contentious election and the larger voter turnout that’s anticipated, many schools in Maine have opted to cancel classes on Election Day.