Dec 12, 2012 7:43 PM by Chris Welty
The Lafayette Parish School Board is looking at a plan to make schools safer.
The proposal includes installing cameras and alarm systems in all 42 schools. The plan also calls for six safety officers to add support to resource officers already on many campuses.
All high school campuses have cameras and only a handful of middle and elementary campuses do. The issue, some of them don't work and many are outdated.
L.J. Alleman Middle School has five surveillance cameras on campus. Principal Kathy Aloisio says it's a great tool for her campus with more than one thousand students.
"If we have an incident then we always have the video to back-up any story or if we needed to locate someone it would help out greatly."
Aloisio has used the cameras several times.
"Sometimes they'll have an incident in a hallway or something in the gym and they'll say this is what happened. We can go back and review the footage to see who was there and identify witnesses."
Out of Alleman's five cameras, only three work. It's a common problem on campuses across Lafayette Parish. he school board hopes to create a more uniform system, installing the cameras based on need.
"High schools a greater need, middle schools a need, and elementary a lesser need, but everybody will have some," said Assistant Superintendent Sandra Billeaudeau.
In all, the board is looking at buying nearly 300 cameras and installing alarm systems.
"We have a lot of equipment and valuables within the school and we have to protect our property."
The proposed safety package will cost almost two million dollars and the board will decide how it will be funded.