The Los Angeles Unified School District plans to make more than 1,000 new hires to bolster security at hundreds of campuses in a move certain critics have called “security on the cheap,” according to an article from the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.
More than 400 LAUSD elementary school campuses will receive a minimum of two new campus aids on each campus as early as March 1, LAUSD school board president Monica Garcia says.
The $4.2 million plan comes a month after the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
The campus aides will be unarmed but equipped with two-way radios and vests “for high visibility,” according to a Jan. 23 memo. Required safety training for these aides will be conducted online, covering child abuse awareness training; employee duties during an emergency; mediating student conflicts, responding to threats on campus; how to conduct metal detector searches; and what to do during a school lockdown, the memo says.
According to the SGV Tribune, the aides will work in three-hour shifts.
However, one critic – Scott Folsom, a Mount Washington Elementary School Parent Teach Association member and state PTA board member – says that “If we are really concerned about security on campus, which I think we should be, we should at least have trained uniformed, full-time people. They don’t have to be armed policemen, but they need to be real security guards.”
There are already 1,028 campus aides at middle and high schools, but the extra positions are for elementary school campuses without aides, the article reports. School officials plan to fill many of the new positions with former LAUSD employees who had been laid off.