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Mid-Missouri schools evolve security and safety plans

Columbia Public Schools said it takes its safety and security seriously, and officials are constantly evolving security plans.

“We obviously have what people would normally think security cameras and lighting, you know all of those types of deterrents,” CPS spokeswoman Michelle Baumstark said.

But to add extra safety, the district is putting on security film right now.

“We are working towards in installing window sheeting – it’s a protective film on windows and doors on our school buildings throughout the school district,” Baumstark said.

She also said they are looking at changing access points for school buildings, by adding secure entryways.

She said schools have intruder training – a system called “Alice,” and they work closely with law enforcement.

Beyond building security, there’s an effort to look for students who might be showing signs of possible violence.

Gerry Lee with Missouri School Safety Association said teachers, counselors and bus drivers in 100 districts across the state are using the behavioral risk assessment.

“Identifying those issues or traits where kids that are having trouble whatever that might be and identifying those early so we can prevent some of this from happening,” Lee said.

Lee said the program’s coursework bottom line is prevention and student safety.

“We can provide those resources to help them on a personal level so down the road, it doesn’t escalate,” Lee said.

Jefferson City Public Schools said they are doing intruder drill once each quarter and they are also exploring visitor management systems.

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