Thursday, officials with the Georgia Emergency Management Agency officially recognized the schools for their safety efforts.
For more than a year, schools throughout Lowndes County have been drawing up new security plans, and on Thursday GEMA gave those plans their stamp of approval.
Wes Taylor, principal at Lowndes High School, says, "We've taken numerous steps to insure the safety of our students and Lowndes High School, and the recognition from GEMA is just like icing on the cake for us. Safety is always on our mind."
Keeping the gates closed and locked is one of the many aspects of the specialized security plan at Lowndes High, but county administrators say this isn't the only school with a specialized program in place to provide the best level of security.
Ken Colson of Lowndes County Schools, says, "You can't take a plan from one school and go apply it to another school, because they are for each particular school. The teams looked at the school, its layout, what was needed and the schools and the teams worked on these plans from each perspective."
But many schools share similar features, including security cameras and deputies from the Sheriff's Office.
"The recognition by GEMA will say to our parents and our stakeholders in our community, that safety is a priority for us in the Lowndes County School System," adds Wes Taylor.
A priority, because no one knows when schools could become targets.
The Lowndes schools are not alone, other schools in our area have also been recognized by GEMA, including several schools in Thomas County.