Some Guilford County elementary schools lack buzz-in systems at entrances

On Your Side
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FOX8 On Your Side is asking questions about why some schools don’t have buzz-in systems at their entrances.

All elementary schools in Forsyth County have the system that locks the front door and requires a visitor to press a button to be allowed inside.

“It’s money well spent to know who comes in and out the door,” Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools Director of Security Jonathon Wilson said. “The worst-case scenario for me is not knowing who is in the building.”

Buzz-in security systems were also installed at all school entrances in Alamance-Burlington and Davidson County schools back in 2014. One parent called FOX8 and said Yadkin Valley Regional Academy in Lexington does not.

Even our state’s largest school system in Wake County has them at every school.

But FOX8 On Your Side found many Guilford County Schools don’t have this protection for students.

Lori Slate loves her daughter’s elementary school in High Point. When she visits though, she finds there is not enough security at the front door.

“We want her to be safe and there’s nothing stopping anyone from walking into that school,” Slate said.

There are signs posted telling visitors to sign in at the main office but Slate wants the buzz-in system too.

“They all should have that feature there should not be a school out there without that security,” she said.

Chris Nowlin became executive director of emergency management for Guilford County Schools in 2016. He tells us 42 schools in Guilford County do not have the buzz-in security system.

“It comes down to resource availability and vendor availability and things like that. We knock these things out as quickly as we can when we have everything we need in place,” Nowlin said.

GCS will add the buzz-in system to all school entrances. It will cost on average $4,000 per school.

Nowlin says the goal is to have all schools done by the end of the summer.

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