What 5A & 5B can do to improve school safety

interior door locks

The Jeffco Schools Safety Task Force presented a list of recommendations early this month. Among their top recommendations?

  • More physical security improvements like door locks, secure entryways, safety window film, and door alarms
  • Additional security personnel, including more school resource officers (SROs) and Jeffco security personnel
  • Adding a campus supervisor to every Jeffco middle school
  • More mental health support, especially at the elementary school level

But each of those recommendations has a price tag. For example, interior door locks make it easier for anyone to quickly lock a classroom door in an emergency from the inside rather than requiring educators to step into the hallway to lock their classroom door with a key.

Jeffco Schools has already replaced approximately 1,300 classroom locks, like the one you see above, at a cost of $800,000. But, there are still 4,800 classrooms that need those locks. The approximate cost? $4 million.

Safety window film, used to keep an intruder from gaining access, costs $5 per square foot. Other physical security improvements, like secure entry vestibules, security signage, and door alarms, also cost money. With 5B, we can fast-track these security improvements. Every single school's facility fact sheet includes security improvements if 5B passes.

The same holds true for 5A, which dedicates 20 percent of the mill levy override money to increase safety and security. With 5A, Jeffco will be able to add campus supervisors to schools along with other Jeffco security personnel. The mill dollars will also allow Jeffco to fund more mental health support and resources to help struggling and suicidal students. 

During the presentation, one Safety Task Force member said, "Simply put, it should not be hard to lock a door in an emergency.” We agree — and we need your help to pass 5A and 5B to put those improvements in place.

The task force's written report will be released Oct. 19. You can also learn more about the Safety Task Force presentation here and here.

Vote YES on 5A and 5B.