BROADVIEW HEIGHTS, (WJW) – The FOX 8 I-Team went behind the barrel of a gun and on the other side of protected glass to get you a look at the newest ways to protect your child’s school.
Tuesday, an I-Team camera rolled for a demonstration of the newest bulletproof materials. It’s the latest protections for schools against a gunman trying to go on a rampage.
We found a crowd of police officers and school safety managers checking it all out and asking questions at the Stonewall Shooting Range.
“If we can keep an active shooter in the parking lot, keep a bad actor in the parking lot, we win,” said Wayne Gregory, the managing director with Eversafe Security Solutions.
He showed the group new materials for reinforcing doors, windows and walls.
All of the reinforcements stood up to gunfire from a handgun, shotgun and a beating from a baseball bat. One of the bulletproof protections is almost as thin as paper.
Meanwhile, we wondered about the cost. The I-Team found it can cost $250 to $350 to cover a wall or door.
We also asked if school districts these days can afford this kind of security.
Tim DelVecchio with the Ohio Schools Council told us districts are now scrambling for a piece of $5 million in state grant money.
Akron Schools have already installed similar protections in some buildings.
The folks at the demonstration point out that school shootings, overall, are rare, but they can happen anywhere.
“How do we fortify our front doors without making it look like a prison?” DelVecchio said. “You buy car insurance. You don’t expect to get in an accident, but it’s just good practice we prepare for these kinds of things.”
Security experts say the new bulletproof protections are also getting a hard look from businesses and churches to beef up security.
Very often, an attacker comes right in the front or back door.
“We realize where those vulnerability points are. You do not need to put the entire window film on the entire school,” said Tim Dimoff of SACS Consulting and Investigative Services.
The deadline for the state grant money is coming up in just weeks, so you may see some of the new security measures at a school near you soon.