The Santa Fe school board voted to reallocate over $10 million in funds to build a new central administration building that will improve access control.
Most schools in the district have one entryway that stays locked at all times, other than when students are entering and exiting the building, reports Santa Fe New Mexican. Santa Fe High School was an exception.
In a 4-0 vote, board member Maureen Cashman says project will allow better visibility at the Santa Fe High School campus “so we can start securing this campus and not have it be so wide open.”
Currently, the campus is too spread out, so the district’s goal is to make it more of a “closed” campus.
The money will not be taken away from other specific school projects, the board emphasized.
The first step is to demolish the existing administration building, which is set back away from the main entrance.
Gabe Romero, the district’s head of facilities and former head of security says work is expected to begin soon and completed by 2020.
This is just the first of many project the school district has planned. For example, the cafeteria is set to be moved closer to the court yard, which is at the center of the complex.
“The college-type open campus is not condutive to the security needs of a high school,” Romero said. “We’re trying to pull in some of the ouliers.”
On a district-level, Santa Fe public schools will be seeing security measures as well. A visitor identification system will be installed on to spot sex offendors and barricade devices will be put on all class room doors.
The district also plans to re-examine procedures for conducting lockdowns, shelter-in-place and fire drills.
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