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Building camouflaged security measures into schools

Posted at 6:32 PM, Nov 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-07 19:40:10-05

STROUD, Okla. — With all the security measures going into Green Country schools, it can be difficult to create a place to learn that does not feel like a prison. But Stroud's $33 million high school does so by using all the latest technology with a special design.

Stroud Public Schools Superintendent Joe Van Tuyl says several levels of security at the school are camouflaged. Around 200 students walk the long hallways, designed to allow for teachers, students, or faculty to spot any questionable behavior from across the school, and report it immediately.

"We actually have telephones in each classroom that are available for callouts to the main office," Van Tuyl said. "We wanted it to appear to not be institutional, we wanted it to be friendly, we wanted it to be warm, but we also wanted to have that security built into it so that everybody could have a high comfort level when they come here every day."

All the traffic that comes into the school has to go through the front door, and then move through a side administration room. All that traffic is monitored by cameras placed at the front doors.

The classrooms don't have any windows facing the hallway. And when the doors close, they're designed to protect everyone inside from any forceful threat.

"We like the ability to be able to see into the classrooms, but the trade-off is this: if you have an issue in the school, is that visibility all that important if you're going to have cameras in the rooms anyway?" Van Tuyl said.

Those cameras all go back to a central room. The building is designed to have a panoramic camera in every room that can see every corner. And for a storm or any threat, the building's safe room can fit 400 people. It's built into the hill the school sits on, so three sides are underground.

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