Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools to Get $300,000 Safety Grant
The North Carolina district, which consists of more than 80 schools, will use the money to replace intercom and entry systems at its elementary schools.
Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools (WSFCS) was notified it has been awarded a $300,000 School Safety Equipment Grant from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.
The district, which consists of more than 80 schools, plans to use the money to replace and update its intercom and entry systems at all elementary schools, reports WFMY. The updated systems will include additional security cameras that can be integrated into the existing camera software.
The grant money will also be used to add electrified latching systems, which also will include cameras, to exterior service doors at all 70 kitchens in the district. Any remaining funds will be used to update and integrate cameras on existing intercom and entry devices at district middle schools and other administrative sites.
“This really allows us to have a standard, secure entry platform across the district,” said Assistant Superintendent of Operations Darrell Walker. “This will incredibly enhance our ability to monitor all campuses from one central location. We will also be able to visually monitor service entrances and other doors that we could not before.”
Back in March 2018, at the recommendation of district security director Jonathan Wilson, WSFCS started requiring that teachers, administrators and school personnel have their ID badges visible at all times to make staff easier to identify in the hallways for campus visitors and first responders. Bus drivers, food service employees and contracted employees working on a school campus are also required to wear badges.
“These steps are not meant to be uninviting, they’re not meant to slow people down each day, but we feel that these are necessary steps to take in light of current events,” Wilson said at the time. “The benefits to that outweigh any inconvenience that it may cause.”
The latest equipment is anticipated to be installed by mid-June.