Leon County Schools set to improve security measures using metal detectors and patrol dogs

The LCS announces taking extra safety measure that includes an anonymous app, patrol dog and metal detectors.
Published: Dec. 6, 2022 at 12:40 PM EST
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - The Leon County Schools announced Tuesday morning the new safety procedures for middle and high schools that will begin on January 1, 2023.

The LCS is taking extra safety measures to keep schools and students safe and to prevent tragedies from occurring.

“As you know, not only in Leon County Schools, schools across the country have seen an increased, unfortunately, of students bringing weapons and guns to campuses,” Superintendent of Schools, Rocky Hanna said. " The initiative I believe will serve as a further deterrent from students making very very poor decisions that will affect them for the rest of their life.”

Hanna said the extra safety measures will include an anonymous app, dog patrol and hand-held metal detectors.

“This is a responsibility that we don’t take lightly. This is an attention-getter—I have tried, we have all tried to let our kids know about the seriousness of bringing a weapon on campus,” Hanna said.

The anonymous app will allow students, parents and teachers to notify principals, deans or school administration anonymously in real time about any concerning issues. The app can be used for everything including mental health, homeless situations or someone who is going through issues or has a weapon on campus.

According to Joe Burgess, Chiles High School principal, someone might not report something if they can’t be anonymous. The schools are working to get past the stigma of people being called “snitches.”

“We’ve got to work to get past the stigma of someone being called a ‘snitch.’ What we want to do is prevent tragedies from happening,” Burgess said.

It will be at the message senders’ discretion if they want to send one message or be in continuous contact through the app, Burgess said. There is also a portal that can be accessed through the LCS website where messages can be sent.

A dog named Stassi will work for the district to detect weapons. She has gone through training and can detect the odor of gunpowder, guns and bullets.

Handheld metal detectors will be used for the search of weapons. Checks and wanding will be randomly done by the school and the security team. There will be no targeting of any kids, it will be 100 percent random.

At the moment, LCS has one team and one dog.