Liberty schools adding new security measures
LIBERTY — Liberty Local Schools Board of Education accepted a contract Thursday to install new security technologies throughout its district because of safety concerns.
The district accepted the bid of $344,728.80 for equipment advancement in each of its schools through Pacific OneSource Inc.
On Aug. 28, the Board of Education approved the resolution authorizing Treasurer Maureen Lloyd to publish a legal notice for solicitation of competitive bids in accordance with the plans and specifications for the project and in compliance with Ohio’s bidding codes. Lloyd publicly read and recorded each submitted bid on Sept. 22.
After the board members determined the need to install, configure and program security camera equipment in all of its schools, Superintendent Andrew Tommelleo said he is looking forward to the process.
“We’ve been working on this for a year, since we received $300,000 from the state’s safety grant,” Tommelleo said. “And we’ve done extensive research and planning to try to ensure that we have a comprehensive plan for safety and security that should ensure confidence in our families, staff and students that I believe will make us really stand out in the state.”
Due to a lack in visitor security protocol, Tommelleo explained, the included updates feature installations related to such, along with panic buttons for instructors.
“I believe it’s going to give all of our instructors a tremendous sense of security where they have the ability to touch a button and report critical information,” Tommelleo continued. “And that will be distributed differently, depending on the severity of the need. A lot of staff training will need to go into this to make it fully functional.”
School administrators said they were hoping to have the training at the beginning of the year, but the project was delayed.
“Once it’s implemented, we will have professional development days,” Tomelleo added. “Thanks to the board’s approval, these days are spread throughout the year. So when we’re ready, we will be able to implement the training during those days. Even when there may be something planned, this will be something that will take precedence or priority with scheduling those days. We should be able to easily schedule.”
Outside of security measures, Liberty Local School District also accepted a recommended litigation settlement with Altria Group INC., Phillip Morris USA Inc., and related companies.
Subject to final legal review and approval, as a plaintiff in a multi-district lawsuit against Juul Labs Inc. based in California, the district is represented by Frantz Law Group in the case. School districts across the nation have corroborated against Juul e-cigarettes. In March, Treasurer Maureen Lloyd said the district would receive $23,163 over four years with the first payment this fall.
The lawsuit claims nicotine levels in vapes lead to addiction due to misleading branding and marketing efforts by electronic cigarette companies. It suggested that marketing campaigns were targeted toward minors and that companies failed to warn their products might be more addictive than traditional tobacco products.