Marlboro Stays at the Center of the School Security Discussion
The decision to put cops in schools came after the tragic school shooting in Newtown, CT.
Marlboro students entered their first day of school in 2013 yesterday and were greeted by township police officers, as promised. Some parents and students were also greeted by New York reporters.
Marlboro Township has become the topic of discussion in the media after announcing the decision to place armed officers in each school come 2013.
"The order has been given to keep all media off campus," Mayor Jon Hornik said. "[The media] has completely overreacted, I quite frankly don't understand the news coverage. We have always had school resource officers."
The new school security decision came to fruition in the wake of the Newtown, CT school shooting which claimed the lives of 20 children and six adults on Dec. 14.
"We were the first to take active measures," Hornik said. "This was the only immediate step we could take."
Hornik said that while he and other township officials have openly answered media questions, in no way is anyone in Marlboro actively seeking media coverage on the issue.
The township already has digital security measures in place, including a Visitor Management System which scans drivers licenses of any school visitors and checks names against local, state and national databases.
The Board of Education announced on Wednesday that the program will cost $100,000 for 90 days, to be paid for through the district's general fund.
Marlboro High School has always had a school resource officer, but township elementary and middle schools now have permanent officers, at least until February. At that time, the Board of Education and Police Department will assess any changes necessary for school security.
The announcement of the new plan came less than one day before National Rifle Association head Wayne LaPierre announced his similar ideas for school safety.
And while township and board officials are standing strong with their decision, Hornik said he didn't expect the township's announcement to become national news.
Hornik said, "I don't understand why the media has focused in on our policy change."