MISD Elementary Schools To Receive Security, Technology Upgrades

MISD Elementary Schools To Receive Security, Technology Upgrades

Anum Valliani

NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - Midland ISD schools are getting stocked with new supplies. It's all part of the 2012 bond to improve technology and safety in the elementary schools.

No school will be left behind. The 24 existing schools, 3 new ones being built, and the Midland Alternative Program will all be upgraded to an access control system.

Some features include security cameras with higher resolution, badges that double as keys for teachers, and microphones and phones that will be added inside every classroom.

Each teacher's card is programmed for different levels of accessibility, allowing for more accountability. Technology Director for MISD Tom Holly said the district is setting the bar high as most of them don't completely revamp everything at once.

"Truly I think the scale of what we're doing, all at the same time to increase our abilities quickly is what's impressive," he said. He added that law enforcement would better be connected to monitor safety virtually via an electronic feed to them and step in when needed.

"This is different from the past of course in which there was an open door policy, but we think that parents and visitors alike will appreciate the fact that there is a closer eye on security," MISD Communications Specialist Elizabeth York said.

Plus the upgrades won't just become useless tomorrow.

"This is all long-term investment which is I think appropriate when you spend bond money," Holly said. But he did add that some things couldn't be revealed fully.

"It's just a long list. It's not like we're trying to conceal anything, but I'm sure there are things we wouldn't release, just because people don't need to know that," he explained.

Like the exact location of the panic button. And if teachers can't reach it, they can enter a pin code into an app on their iPads or smartphones and put the school on lock down remotely

Teachers have been getting their new ID cards made, and they seem excited.

"They feel supported and backed by systems that are being put in place to ensure their best interests and just help them teach in the best environment possible," York said.

Note: The elementary school numbers are changing. For the latest information please visit the MISD website.