Gwinnett County

Gwinnett Public Schools adding police officers, new technology that checks for sex offenders

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga — In the wake of the mass school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, the Gwinnett County School District is enhancing campus security.

The school’s police chief says they are in the process of hiring 10 armed school security officers.

The state’s largest school system currently has 98 school resource officers.

“Safety and security at every school are hard. You have to draw a fine line between keeping a school safe and making it look like a military installation,” Gwinnett School District Police Chief Tony Lockhart said.

Lockhart said in addition to extra resource officers, security vestibules will be added to 19 more schools in the district.

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The vestibules have video cameras and a special locking system. Visitors have to be let through two sets of doors before entering the office lobby.

“This is an added layer of security,” Lockhart said.

The school district is also launching a new visitor management system called Raptor.

“Once someone checks into the school, it runs a cross-check against the sexual offender registry,” Lockhart said.

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The chief said the school system is also opening a special tip line that will make it easy for students and parents to report anything suspicious.

“They are our ears and eyes. If they see something, say something. It’s a force multiplier,” Lockhart said.

Parents welcome the added security measures for their children when they return to school next month.

“I really hope to see more security even before you get on the premises of the school grounds,” parent Karen Jiminies said.

The salary for a school resource officer in the Gwinnett County School District ranges from $48,000 to $66,000 a year.

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