TAMPA - Parts of a security plan rejected by the Hillsborough County School Board may have a chance of revival.
Members met Tuesday to discuss implementing a portion of the original proposal.
The new plan is just a fraction of the initial $4 million proposal rejected in January. School officials want more chain link fences, are considering bars on windows and surveillance cameras.
According to a security expert consulted by ABC Action News, those measures may not be enough to keep children safe.
Craig Gundry works for private security firm Critical Intervention Services, and he looked at two different schools.
He noticed fences left wide open, and said there is nothing to alarm people of intruders. "To be honest," he said, "a six-foot fence is not going to provide you with much protection to begin with."
Gundry, a former soldier and current terrorist specialist, questions if the measures are a wise use of money.
"So whether or not it would be worth the money it has to be carefully gauged because there may be better ways to spend the money," explained Gundry.
"Surveillance cameras can be a good thing," he explained, "but only if they are being monitored. Otherwise it's only good for the investigation afterward. What did the bad guy do?"
School officials said the enhancements would cost about $1 million.
In January, the board rejected the majority of the plan: Armed guards at schools, crisis management training, and controlled access.
"That's unfortunate, because many of things you described are the things we need to do to protect these schools," said Gundry.
In addition, Gundry feels money should be used for locking mechanisms and making doors impenetrable.
"Those are things that will allow teachers to effectively protect their students in hardened areas inside their classrooms, basically," said Gundry.
Parents are also waiting to hear what the board decides. Some were troubled that the idea of armed guards was rejected.
"Those are the people that can react immediately if harm comes in our children's way and having their presence there will help deter people that want to cause violence in our schools," said Tillman.
Other moms, like Mandy Sprayberry, said if taxes need to be raised, they are willing to pay. "I think, why not pay more taxes in order to protect our kids?"
The school board did discuss hiring a security expert. Gundry hopes they do.
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