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Families react to new Center School District security policies

Center School District
Posted at 7:20 PM, Jul 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-10 13:09:52-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Parents who have children in the Center School District are reacting to new security procedures that will be in place when students return to school this fall.

"It's just a really scary time to be a parent," Kelsey Raper, who has two kids at Center High School, said.

The new security procedures were announced on Tuesday, and Raper says she doesn't mind metal detectors.

"I think that's the easiest way to filter out people who might be trying to bring in something dangerous," she said.

Center High School, the Center Academy for Success and Center Middle School will have metal detectors.

Additionally, CHS students will have the added requirement to wear clear backpacks.

"It might lap over into privacy or students' privacy, depending on what's in their backpacks," Raper said of the clear backpack policy.

Another part of the district's new security policy is a cell phone policy.

According to the policy, it's meant "to maximize student engagement and learning, and reduce distractions in the classroom."

The specifics of the policy can be read below:

  • Students are allowed to use their cell phones in the hallways during passing periods, and in the CHS cafeteria
  • Upon entering a classroom, students are expected to place their cell phone in the cell phone lock box that is near their teacher’s desk. The cell phone lock box will be closed and locked by the teacher once class begins. The cell phone must remain in the lock box for the entire class period. Teachers will unlock the lock box, and hand phones back to students at the end of each period

Raper said she's not as on-board with the new cell phone policy.

"Most of the moms, especially the ones I've spoken to, are really concerned about not being able to get a hold of their kids and vice versa in some type of emergency," Raper said. "I do think that it's common sense that kids should have the ability to call for help."

On top of those worries, she also has two five-year-olds.

She says she's seriously considering home schooling them.

"I've been looking up curriculum and Missouri home school laws and staying part time at my job for the time being so we can do that," she said.

Even with new protocols, Raper says she wants to protect her little ones.

"We don't necessarily feel safe sending them out to public school," she said.