Several schools in the Ozarks are improving security measures, in and out of the classroom, as student safety continues to be a top priority.
Ozark, Springfield, and Nixa are among the 566 schools in Missouri that received money through a grant program.
Dr. Kim Fitzpatrick — the executive director of student services — tells me they will use this 300,000 dollars to improve safety measures on their school buses as well as their emergency radio handhelds.
“Student safety is the number one priority our community has voiced and we take that very seriously at Ozark, so these funds will help us upgrade those systems that are already in place and that will impact every student,” said Fitzpatrick.
Fitzpatrick said they will upgrade security cameras on school buses and vehicles so that in case of an incident, they can go back and review the footage and see where they need to make improvements.
The school district will also install GPS systems in their buses.
Dr.Fitzpatrick said it will allow them to track buses 24/7 and make sure they know where students are at all times.
The district will also improve the surveillance in their hallways, which will allow them to monitor the building entrances.
“We’ve always wanted GPS but it’s just a cost factor honestly… so that’s been a priority of ours and on our list and this grant allows it to happen,” said Dr.Fitzpatrick.
Dr. Fitzpatrick tells me the school district is working as fast as they can to get the upgrades added.