School District of Janesville
Janesville School District

Janesville (Wis.) school district beefs up security in schools built in pre-Columbine era

May 26, 2021
Schools are getting safer entrance ways and fire system updates.

The Janesville (Wis.) school district is beefing up its security systems at several schools in order to better protect students. 

Superintendent Steve Pophal said the schools needing upgrades were built in the before the 1999 Columbine massacre, when people were permitted to enter most schools without restrictions.

The district wants to update school entrances to establish more secure pathways

In November 2020, district voters approved a $22.5 million referendum that will provide funds for the projects and other improvements, reportsGazetteXtra.

In 2007-08, the district began installing video monitoring systems with intercoms at schools so office staff could talk to visitors before buzzing them into the building.

But officials have learned that the system had a flaw: Anyone who is buzzed in can walk by the school office without checking in.

School entrances that were updated in the early 2000s lacked a holding area, where people would be forced to register with staff before being allowed inside. The new renovations will remedy that flaw by installing two locked doors that all visitors must pass through.

JP Cullen & Sons is the construction manager for the project. 

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