Increased security measures have been put in place at Beairsto Elementary to keep students and staff safe.
Two locking gates have been installed around the school yard for security during the day.
“We have been very lucky to have these installed as they will help alleviate the non-school people traffic that walk through our grounds during the school day and to keep our students within the school grounds,” the school said in a letter to parents April 5.
Some parents, and staff, were shocked to see the new gates upon returning to school from spring break.
“When I dropped off my kid they were closing off the gates and said we had to take a different way in,” one parent told The Morning Star. “The teachers didn’t know anything when we talked to them so it came as a surprise to them too.”
While the mother admitted the gates are a “pain in the butt,” she understands the necessity.
“There was a bunch of shopping carts bunched up outside of the closed gate so you can see how they are actually making the kids safer right away.”
There is a rolling gate at the bus loop and a latching gate at the front of the school at the stairs from 27th Street.
The bus loop gate is closed and locked during school hours, starting at 9 a.m. and opened at the end of the day for bus students, and locked again after the last bus.
A shorter gate at the front of the school will be always closed and staff will monitor it to see if will need to be locked during the school day, according to Beairsto.
“As with any change there will be adjustments to the way we are used to doing things. Please understand that these gates are important measures to keep our students and staff safe when they are here.”