Osceola County implementing security changes on school campuses



KISSIMMEE, Fla. - Officials in Osceola County are implementing a wide variety of changes in an effort to make their school campuses safer.

Some Gateway High School students told Channel 9's Ryan Hughes that they never worry about their safety on the Kissimmee campus.

"The deans are always there. Like, they're always driving around school and watching us. If anything happens, they got us," said student Armanni Pimentel.

But Osceola County School District leaders said school security is always on their minds, especially after at shooting at an Orange County high school recently.

On Tuesday night, district leaders discussed several major security measures, including 1,600 surveillance cameras spread out at all 60 district schools.

"I have somebody on staff who, at least once a week if not more, checks every single camera in the entire district," said Mark Munas of the Osceola County School District.

The district has also implemented an ID system at every school that electronically checks all visitors.

"It's a computer check-in system that requires the scanning of driver's licenses. And it checks for sex offenders," said Munas.

Hughes was told that the system recently stopped a sex offender trying to get into a school. The man was turned away and police were notified.

A wireless lock system was just installed at 16 schools. It gives officials the ability to lock out any staff member who has a scan card and isn't permitted on campus.

Officials said the district will also begin to randomly use four portable metal detectors.

Osceola County School Board member Jay Wheeler said he thinks it's long overdue.

"The last thing I want to do is go to a kid's funeral because somebody brought a gun to school," said Wheeler.

Officials said that the driver's license checking system has caused a couple of false alarms, but they said well worth having.