Summit school starts locking doors for safety
Tracy L. Lund
October 30, 2006 | SMITHFIELD -- With the nation reeling
from a string of school shootings, Summit Elementary
wants to make sure its students are as safe as possible.
As of Oct. 16, all outside doors to the school building
except the door closest to the office have been locked
during school hours. Students may enter through any
of the doors before school begins, but at 8:55 the doors
are locked and will remain locked for the entire day.
Carol White, administrative assistant to the superintendent
of the Cache County School District, said the district
was spurred into action when phone calls from concerned
parents started coming in. "After the recent tragedies
across the country, we have had parents calling and
telling us they can get into their child's school at
any time, through any door and wanting to know what
we could do about it."
White said the policy is to some degree district-wide.
"It's easier to have a locked door policy at the elementary
level rather than the secondary level," she said. "At
the secondary schools, there are more doors as well
as different buildings students need access to for classes."
Trudy Wilson, Summit Elementary principal said, "learning
is our number one priority and in order for students
to learn, they need to feel safe." Wilson said Summit
decided to adopt this policy at a recent principals'
meeting, when the superintendent of the school district
strongly suggested it.
In addition to the locked door policy, Summit school
is asking that all visitors check in at the office and
get a visitor's sticker. "This is all in an effort to
know who is in our building at any given time," Wilson
Wilson said the doors can be opened from the outside
by a keyless remote which all staff members carry. "Each
remote can be deactivated separately from the system,"
Wilson said. "That way if one gets lost, we can just
deactivate that one, rather than have to re-key the
Wilson said since the implementation of the locked
door policy the school has had no problems or complaints
from students or parents.