3 Johnson County school districts get big boost to improve security

This article originally appeared on 13WTHR. To view the original article, click here.  

GREENWOOD, Ind. — School districts in the Greenwood area just got a big boost to help with school security – a million dollars, just approved, to keep kids safe.

The money will be split evenly between the three school districts that serve Greenwood residents. 

Clark-Pleasant is one of the districts and already has specific plans on how to spend it and better protect students.

On fall break, there’s no break for school resource officers.

Thirty officers from across Indiana and the country are in Whiteland right now, getting training to keep students safe. At the same time, the school district is getting an influx of grant money to boost security even more.

“It was a great surprise,” said Clark-Pleasant Superintendent Patrick Spray. “This will allow us to get some of those priorities moved up the list quicker.”

“We’re very thankful to the mayor for donating this money to us,” added Clark-Pleasant Chief of Police Chad Price.

Clark-Pleasant Community Schools, along with Greenwood Community Schools and Center Grove Schools, are each getting $333,000 in school security funding. They will be reimbursed for making safety upgrades.

Greenwood’s mayor came up with the proposal to use a portion of the city’s federal American Rescue Plan money for schools. The Greenwood city council approved the plan unanimously this week.

In Clark-Pleasant, the money will enhance the eyes watching halls and classrooms with upgraded software and sensors added to their 600 cameras.

“It’s called a Halo sensor and it’s a sensor you can put throughout buildings and it can detect everything from vapes to THC to gunshots to aggression,” Price explained.

“The additional sensors and detectors would be able to capture quick movements like a quick congregation of students,” Spray said.

Clark-Pleasant also plans to improve radio communication, tying school police directly to county officers.

“So you’re not having the telephone game,” Spray said. “You’re having where everybody’s on the same channel, hearing the same things and getting the same directions.”

“So if it were a large-scale event, we could deal with that on a much more intimate communication level,” Price added.

Center Grove already has that type of security system in its district.

School leaders tell 13News they’re now in discussions with the school board, deciding how to use this new grant funding.

Greenwood Community Schools is currently auditing its security and plans to spend the money just like Clark-Pleasant, making sure cameras and communication keep kids as safe as possible.