Anne Arundel County Schools announce $15M school safety plan

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WMAR) - Anne Arundel County executives announced on Wednesday they are putting their money where their mouth is when it comes to school safety. 

Officials with the police, the board of education, and county schools have been working around the clock the last couple weeks as threats on social media emerge after the massacre that happened in Florida.  

During a conference on Wednesday, they all came together to announce their plan for tackling this troubling issue. They announced a $14.8 million plan to be implemented over a number of years. 

They first talked about how you cannot underestimate the value of a working partnership with police. One way they plan on doing this is making their schools available to officers in the area. If officers need to work on a case or rest their feet, school officials will make space for them to work, rest, interact with the students, and it also adds another level of security in the building. 

Darnyelle Leonard, a parent in the county said that's a step in the right direction.

"They had several police officers in the school last week," said Leonard. "I think the kids were more comfortable going to school knowing that their was police presence there."

Overall, they outlined four basic area they want to work on: physical security of buildings, improving the ability of officers to tactically respond, improving even more relationships with beat cops and school staff, and the quality of an investigation any time a school threat comes up. 

"No student should be afraid to go to school, and no parent should fear for their children going to Anne Arundel Schools," said County Executive Steve Schuh. 

The multi-million dollar plan will fund more physical school security systems and personnel, including adding 20 more School Resource Officers to protect schools, which is double what the county has now. 

"I'd rather know that my daughters protected," said Robert Carbone, a parent.  "I'd rather know that there's somebody in there that will fight back. That will stand up for her."

$11.7 million will go towards capital spending, double door security systems, additional cameras, door lock upgrades, protective tactical systems that will be phased in over two years. 

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