Safety Improvements to Half Hollow Hills High School West

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       The following list is of 4 improvements created by me, Nick Perry, a student of Half Hollow Hills High School West. Due to the recent shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, I've realized that our school isn’t as secure as it should be. With a few small improvements, the chance of a mass shooting at our school can be drastically reduced. Although over 15 million students attend high school every day and only 122 deaths from mass shootings have occurred since the Columbine shooting(a span of 19 years), I'm sure many members of our community do not want to put their children's lives at risk because of out of date and inefficient security procedures.

  • At 07:20 on days when classes or extracurricular activities are in session, all entrances to the school will be locked. The only entrance to High School West will be the main entrance. In addition, there will be one armed member of the Half Hollow Hills Security Team who guards the main entrance and manages the flow of people entering the building. Anyone who does not possess a valid Half Hollow Hills Student/Faculty ID card will be required to have any accompanying bags to be searched before proceeding to their destination within the school. Also, from 06:45 to 07:20 there will be only one entrance into the cafeteria and it will be monitored by one armed security guard. 
  • Every member of the Half Hollow Hills Security Team that has/had a firearms license in the state of New York will undergo the (re)certification process to carry a pistol while on shift at High School West(see: recertification process). Because of the NYSAFE Act, members of the HHH Security team will not have to reveal any information publicly if they choose(see: Public Exemptions Record). In addition, every member that has been recertified will be required to carry a firearm while on shift, and all firearms will be either safely kept out of the reach of non-certified personnel on school premises while not in possession of a security guard(see: Gun Locks), or the guard will safely transport his/her firearm and ammunition to and from work. This means the firearm and ammunition will be secured by the individual with the same standard that the guns kept at school will be held to. Lastly, no security guard will be allowed to be armed on school premises without going through proper training course(s) that the guards will be compensated for enrolling in(see:
  • When a student signs in to go to the bathroom, bags must be left next to the sign in desk and cannot be brought into the bathroom. Many bombs and explosive components can be easily concealed in a backpack and are much larger than ones that are kept on one’s person. 
  • Lastly, once each period begins the teacher will lock his/her classroom’s door. At the end of the period, the teacher will unlock the door before his/her students leave the classroom. This procedure will occur for every period of the day. If there are any students that have an off period, they will be required to get a pass from a faculty member to go to wherever their intended destination is.

         I want to remind everyone that High School West is one of the best high school in the United States of America. Our spirit and drive to be great at what we do sets us apart. This community is full of brilliant and thoughtful people, and our safety at school is not a "one man job". I am but one of many who believes that more hands-on security procedures will make our school a better place than it already is, and I invite you to share this frame of mind with fellow community members and other communities that may benefit from improvements such as ones stated above. These improvements may seem radical and a somber reminder of what our world has become, but do not forget that our welcoming nature at High School West is not defined by our building nor it’s appearance, but by the students and faculty that walk in the door every day and embrace our Hills West spirit.

“Safety and security don’t just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment.” - Nelson Mandela

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------The following is a link to the United States Department of Justice research report on security technologies in U.S. schools. It encompasses many concepts and questions people will have on implementation and cost of the required improvements to our school. . Front line training in Bohemia is the most likely place where the Half Hollow Hills Security team would be receiving their armed guard training. The link to Front Line Training Center LLC.


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