Starting this week, those who attend Vigo County School Corp. board meetings will have to walk through a metal detector, and bags and purses will be subject to search, said Ray Azar, the Indiana district’s director of student services.
The tightened security for the 16,000-student district’s board meetings is partly in response to an incident at a Panama City, Fla., school board meeting last month. An ex-convict held the school board at gunpoint, fired at school board members—although no one was hurt—and finally turned the gun on himself, committing suicide.
According to Mr. Azar, “We felt it was time to increase our security as the result of just the general nature of things throughout the nation and especially in view of what happened last month” in Panama City. “We wanted to make sure our board meetings are safe for everyone.”
A version of this article appeared in the January 12, 2011 edition of Education Week as District Adds Metal Detectors for School Board Meetings