Woodbrook Elementary Receives Upgrades in School Security
ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) - An Albemarle County elementary school can now go into lockdown mode in seconds, thanks to a new security system.
It’s one of two upgrades meant to help make students and staff feel safe.
Woodbrook Elementary School is the first to roll out this new equipment, which partners with police and first responders, as part of upgrades that will soon be implemented across the county.
With just the push of a button, the school becomes extra secure.
“There's an automatic lockdown switch if there were to be an issue in the school,” Lindsay Snoddy, the deputy director of the building services department, said.
Woodbrook Elementary administrators now have control over every door in the school.
“I'm really excited that our school is one of the first schools to receive this upgrade in security," Lisa Molinaro, the Woodbrook principal, said.
The brand-new security system is a precautionary measure to deter intruders and stop school shootings.
“If there was a serious event in this area, they - the school - can immediately lock the doors that would prevent maybe some type of suspect from entering the building," Lt. Terry Walls of the Albemarle County Police Department, said.
The system can also keep tabs on who comes in, as well as give after-hours access to those who need it.
“One of the main things that it would allow is quick access by police officers and first responders in the event of an emergency,” Walls said.
In the past, you could only get inside after school hours if you were an administrator with a key.
Now, staff, police officers, and first responders all have photo IDs to scan themselves in to the building.
“As we were making the design of the school and these safety upgrades were being put in place, parents were relieved more than anything,” Molinaro said.
In the next four years, the plan is to install this system at every Albemarle County school.
“I know that my colleagues are anxiously awaiting it being rolled out in their schools,” Molinaro said.
Monticello High School is next in line to receive these security upgrades.
It’s currently being funded through the Virginia Department of Education and other grants.
For future installments, the building services department is looking at a variety of proposals to fund the rest of the project.