This article originally appeared on WOIO CBS Channel 19 Cleveland and was written by Shelby Miller. Permission granted to share by Channel 19. To view the original article, click here.
STOW, OH (WOIO) – Safety has become a top priority at schools across the country, which is why one local school district decided to take security to the next level.
From the front door at Stow-Munroe Falls High School, security comes first. Visitors ring a bell, the secretary sees them on a camera and then they’re allowed inside.
While that may seem standard, the next security step is rather new. Guests no longer sign in with pen and paper, these days it’s all digital.
“With a pen and paper, if you entered a false name, that was really it. With this system, there are photographs involved, there are stamps involved, there’s government ID and the level of quality that comes with that,” said Stow-Munroe Falls Principal Dr. Jeffery Hartmann.
Guests must show their IDs to the receptionist.
“We scan their ID and when it scans it goes through a program that allows us to see whether they have a sexual offense on file,” said Stow-Munroe Falls Building Secretary Tracy Burmeister.
If the guest has a prior offense, it shows up on the computer screen. The secretary then alerts the resource officer and principal, and they escort the person out of the building. If the person is cleared, they get a sticker.
“You can’t be too safe. I think we all agree with that statement,” said Principal Hartmann.
Principal Hartmann said he knows the system works. A few years back, it flagged a construction worker who had been hired to roof the high school.
“Having had that experience, I can unequivocally say, yes, it does work,” he said.
It’s a proven method that isn’t only keeping students safe, it’s keeping parents at ease.
“At first they were kind of reluctant, because it takes a second longer than them writing their name, but, once they realized everything… I think they feel more secure,” said Burmeister.
Burmeister said about 50 to 60 percent of the Stow-Munroe Falls City School District uses the guest sign in technology, which is called Raptor.