Background Check Will Soon Be Required to Enter D157-C Buildings

The school board discussed implementing a new check-in procedure, hiring a student resource officer and raising school fees at Monday's meeting.

One month after the school shooting in Newtown, Conn., the Frankfort School District 157-C board of education discussed heightening district security measures at a meeting on Monday.

Superintendent Thomas Hurlburt said during his report that the district will be implementing a new visitor check-in system in the coming weeks, earlier than had previously been anticipated.

“Given the current events, we’ve decided to accelerate that process,” he said.

The new system, which was created by Raptor Technologies, will be introduced to day-to-day district procedures on Jan. 22, according to a press release from the district.

In order to check in, visitors will be required to scan their driver’s licenses, allowing the system to perform a short background check. They will then be issued a security clearance badge that will include their name, photo, date and time of entry and destination.

If the new system identifies a threat, district administration and law enforcement will be alerted immediately.

Previously, district visitors were required to sign a log and submit their driver’s license to building administration in order to obtain a visitor’s pass.

District parent volunteers will have the opportunity to receive their clearance badges from 1-3 p.m. on Jan. 18 at the district office, before the new system is implemented.

The board also discussed the possibility of hiring a student resource officer at Monday’s meeting.

The resource officer, who would rotate between each of the three district buildings, would be similar to a D.A.R.E. officer and might work with teachers and administrators to strengthen security procedures or with students in instances of truancy.

“I see this as being motivated more by some of the recent events,” said Board Member Mike Turner.

During the meeting, it was mentioned that New Lenox School District 122 has a resource officer.

The board will continue to discuss the possibility of adding a resource officer to the district during the coming months.

Monday’s meeting also included a conversation among the board about how much school fees should increase in the coming year.

The majority of the board supported a $10 fee increase, meaning that next year Grand Prairie Elementary students would pay $115 in school fees, Chelsea Intermediate School students would pay $120 and Hickory Creek Middle School students would pay $125.

Students receiving free lunch would automatically qualify for a fee waiver and case-by-case waivers could be issued as well.

The board will vote on whether or not to move forward with the increase in February.

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fromthestreet January 15, 2013 at 11:29 PM
This is simply crazy, it's madness, another example of Corporate and Government Alarmist and their friends out to cash in with scare tactics and propaganda from existing isolated incidents from around the country. There are almost 100,000 public schools throughout the US, not even counting the private schools, so what percentage are we talking about ?
fromthestreet January 15, 2013 at 11:56 PM
'If the new system identifies a threat'... Just what does that mean ? And just what would indicate a threat, something in your past, a domestic, a speeding ticket, a gun registration, a police record, is everybody a threat ? Has the school board run amuck, are they bought by the Corporations to keep you frightened ? !
MommyTwoThree January 16, 2013 at 02:41 PM
Miss Marp, you are quick to say gun control is helpful but then contradict yourself by saying the crazies are going to bust in a school regardless of whatever measures we put in to place that may make your job harder. If the crazies can bust in, then the crazies can also get guns. Last I checked cocaine was illegal but all over the news people are selling it, buying it, using it, and committing crimes while on it. Banning guns is not the answer. However, I do think its a great idea that background checks are performed on anyone who enters my childrens' school regardless of whether or not the tragedy in Newtown happened. I do not want convicted sex offenders anywhere near my children, and it only takes a second for someone to do something horrible to an innocent child.
Miss Marp January 16, 2013 at 07:10 PM
Hello, MommyTwoThree. Gun control is not the same as banning guns – it is a means to try to control who gets them and to try to keep track of who has them. Yes, many illegal items can still be obtained; the difference is how hard it is to obtain them. The easier it is to get them, the more likely it is that some nut will get one and use it. Also, this issue is a separate one from catching child molesters, so I won’t address that in this comment. My point is that a person bent on doing this sort of violent horrific act is not going to stop to swipe a card. They will break the glass, break down the door, or whatever else will get them in before there is much time to react. A “Panic Button” hooked up from the front office to the classrooms and the Police Department is one idea that would be helpful, although that won’t do much to save those on the front lines (in the office). The thing to do here is to react to this tragedy, but in a reasonable way, all the while understanding that there are no guarantees in life. Background checks will do nothing to stop these kinds of events.
Susan January 17, 2013 at 06:55 PM
Miss Marp~ I so agree. If anyone wants to get in to the school and harm the staff or kids, they won't check in at the office first.....they will shoot thier way in. A panic button is a good idea.


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