SPARTANBURG COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – With school back in session, Spartanburg County School District 3 is trying to keep students as safe as possible.
Clifdale Middle School, on Heritage Hills Drive, just got a bit safer.
Monday was the first day the middle school had metal detection systems.
“It’s something that I’m very willing and happy that they participate in, as a mom,” said Ashley Beasley.
All students, faculty, and parents have to walk through the metal detectors. The first step is emptying anything out of your pockets, or metal, putting them in a bin, and walking through. If the light blinks green, you’re good to go.
“It was a sigh of relief of knowing that they’re coming, and the safety is going to increase,” said Beasley.
“We have them set to detect weapons. So, it will detect any handguns, any large knives, things like that,” stated Nicki Cantrell.
Nicki Cantrell, the Safety and Security Coordinator for District 3, said they have two devices at the entrance to the gym and one at the main office.
“It’s important that the students see and understand, it’s here for them, not against them. It’s just here to keep them safe,” she said.
Cantrell said the goal is to keep everyone in the building out of harm’s way.
“Whether it’s somebody trying to get a weapon in to cause mass casualties, and harm, or even a situation where somebody younger finds something at home and sneaks it in their bookbag,” said Cantrell.
It works a lot like the detectors used at the airport. You take out electronics and put them in a bin.
“We just have them hold their bookbags out and the bookbag passes through the metal detectors first. That way if it alerts, we go ahead and take the bookbag and determine what’s setting that off,” said the Security Coordinator.
If nothing triggers the alarm, the person walks through.
“As a parent, it does give me a lot of reassurance knowing that when my kids come through D3, we have that extra level of protection,” said Beasley.
Ashley Beasley is a teacher at Clifdale and has kids in the district. With the new detectors, she said she can focus on teaching her class.
“It is one less thing to worry about. So, when you know that they come through the system, and that doesn’t take away everything that could happen, but it does give you that extra level of assurance,” she said.
Broome High School has had the detectors for over a week now.
Cantrell said if someone, or their bag, triggers the alarm, they are subjected to being searched.
School officials said the metal detectors will be at their sporting events, starting with football season this Friday. They recommend parents and families show up early to get through the lines. Clear bags will now be required at their events.