Simpson County Schools to take new security measures

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FRANKLIN, Kentucky (WBKO) -- Franklin Simpson High School is making some changes to their school with student safety in mind.

"It's something that think about every day," said Simpson County Superintendent Jim Flynn.

One major change will be at the entrance of the school, where a new vestibule will be built that allows front office employees to more easily manage who comes into the building.

Flynn believes a safe school experience can enhance learning.

"Without [students] feeling safe and secure, they're not going to maximize their learning and their preparation for that life-ready vision we have," he said, "so it's always on our mind."

Simpson County Schools are making other efforts as well to keep their schools safe.

"We want to make sure that when we choose those [safety measures], and then we spend that money, it's things that actually move that needle for safety," said Director of Pupil Personnel Joey Kilburn.

The school system also discussed putting barriers in front of a couple schools to even further prevent dangerous situations.

"Our welding instructor and students have designed some really cool bollards that are going to be personalized to the school," said Flynn, "but at the same time help protect the front of the building."

Simpson County is also taking a more behavioral approach at student safety, saying it's not just physical barriers that keep students safe. Often times, it's only people that can keep people safe.

"We want to make sure to create an environment where people are happy, people are welcomed, and people know there are people here that care about them," said Kilburn. "At the end of the day, that'll do more than anything else we can do."

Kilburn believes it's that kind of environment that helps students communicate with faculty. They are urging students that if they hear something dangerous, tell a school administrator or teacher.

A 2015 threat on the Franklin Simpson Middle School has not gone forgotten.

"That incident surely brought it home that something could happen here," expressed Flynn.

Flynn added it was because of one student's willingness to come forward that the 2015 threat was eliminated.

Simpson County Schools are also taking simple measures such as locking doors, including classrooms while class is in session.

They're also warning students not to let un-vetted people into the school.