LAKE MARY. Fla. - The increase in school shootings is causing many schools to rethink their security measures, including Lake Mary Prep.
WFTV's Lori Brown got a firsthand look at how officials at the school are trying to make sure students are protected if a shooter were to show up on campus.
Lake Mary Prep officials said one change it plans to make right away is getting magnetic locks for all of its exterior doors. That would mean a secretary would have to buzz each visitor in and that would make it much harder for a shooter to barge in.
The school called on Lake Mary police officer Zach Hudson to survey its school grounds for any security weaknesses.
"Ten years ago that wasn't an issue," said school headmaster Glenn Chapin.
Chapin said the wisdom of old is no longer relevant.
"Schools have always been taught to send everyone to a single area where we congregate. Time was not an issue; it was just get out of harm's way. Now circumstances have changed and you have to set up layers," said Chapin.
Hudson said he takes the safety of children personally.
"I have a
2- and a 7-year-old, and there is no price, no price, that is worth my kids' lives," said Hudson.
At many schools classroom doors don't lock from the inside.
"If you have an intruder inside your school, you have to be able to fortify it," said Hudson.
He said to do that all a classroom needs is a key lock on the inside of classroom doors.
"Every classroom has to be able to withstand someone trying to get in," said Hudson.
Different rooms should have different strategies, Hudson said -- a classroom you want to lock kids in, in a gym you want to get kids out.
"Evacuating a gym is much, much easier than locking down a gym, because you have so many entry points," said Hudson.
From new locks to higher fences, Lake Mary Prep is one school working to become fortified without becoming fortress.