Lake County Schools approves proposal to install nearly 1,600 security cameras

Plan will be funded by Educational Facilities Security Grant

By Mark Lehman - Reporter

CLERMONT, Fla. - Lake County leaders passed a plan to bring nearly 1,600 security cameras to middle and high schools across the district.

The plan will be funded by the Educational Facilities Security Grant and is part of a project that has already upgraded security cameras in elementary schools.

According to district records, the plan will provide $902,263 to install 407 indoor cameras and 1,185 outdoor cameras on various school campuses.

"As law enforcement officers, we want every single tool possible that will ensure the safety of the students in the schools and help us to make a response quickly and effective in a given situation," Lt. John Herrell from the Lake County Sheriff's Office said.

The upgrades will be the latest security enhancement for the district that has seen a number of changes after the February 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Since the beginning of the school year, nine schools in Lake County have allowed a volunteer administrator to carry a gun on campus. Security guardians were also added to schools to help fill gaps where there were no school resource officers.

Also, deputies began using a new app that allows first responders to quickly access detailed floor plans of a school during an emergency. The software, called Power DMS, was created by an Orlando-based company and has been used by deputies during training situations.

"If they're not familiar with that school, they can open up the map on their smartphone and they can more easily and more quickly get there," Herrell said.

The proposal for new security cameras was scheduled for a vote on Monday at 6 p.m.

The district said a majority of the cameras would be installed before the beginning of the school year and the project would be completed before the end of 2019.
 

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