Parents concerned about student safety at Brooks Elementary, additional security measures underway

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KILLEN, Ala. (WHNT) -  Some parents in Lauderdale County took to social media to explain their concerns for student safety at Brooks Elementary School in Killen.

Jason Schurfeld wrote, "I believe that the school needs to have better protocol for security of our children."  Lauderdale County Schools superintendent Jennifer Gray explained that, currently, protocol is that visitors must check in with the front office, and teachers are urged to report anyone they do not recognize on school property.

"We actually have plans in place that we had started looking at a couple weeks ago when we realized there were some ways we could improve," said Gray.

The school is already under surveillance. However one main concern parents share is the front door.

"We are working toward some measures, some additional measures, that will allow parents to be seen as they come in," Gray explained. "We actually have already ordered some additional cameras and monitors. We're looking at reconfiguring part of the office to where someone can see what goes on at that front door."

As for a buzzer system, Gray said it's definitely something that they would look into.

"There's no one magic fix for this problem. Everything is open to discussion, and we will look at the things that we can do to keep on providing a safe environment at Brooks Elementary."

Cost is also a big factor into enhancing safety for Lauderdale County schools. According to the Lauderdale County Board of Education's proposed annual budget for 2016, "...in addition to the financial plan presented in the Proposed Budget the school system is required to submit to the State Department of Education nine other operational plans. These additional plans are as follows: (1) Capital Projects; (2) Student Transportation; (3) Professional Development; (4) Technology; (5) Special Education; (6) At-Risk Students; (7) Career/Technical Education, (8) Federal Programs, and (9) School Safety."

Gray said the additional cameras, monitors and the front office reconstruction will happen very soon.

If you are a parent concerned about your child's safety in a Lauderdale County school, you can voice those concerns at the next board of education meeting. That is set for Wednesday, October 21 at 4 p.m. at the BOE building.