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Kendra Lyn, NBC 5
Dallas Independent School District opens three new campuses with new security measures.
As thousands of students head back to school this week, many will see more officers, more cameras and more security measures designed to keep children safe.
After the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut, where 20 students and six adults were gunned down last December, the Dallas Independent School District created a task force on school security and the board of trustees approved $4.5 million for upgrades.
There is a buzzer at the front door, as well as a camera, so office staff can see who wants to come inside. There are also what look like peep holes at other doors, so staff can see who is there without opening the door. The district also added 10 new officers.
“We have gone into the schools and provided a stronger physical barrier,” said Dallas ISD police chief Craig Miller, at a news conference on Aug. 13.
"Certainly we've done a lot of active shooter training with our officers," Miller added on Monday. "But the day-to-day safety concerns -- how people get on the campus and in the door -- is the focus of what we're looking at."
Parents that spoke with NBC 5 at a back to school block party said they feel good about the changes.
“We don’t want some stranger, picking up our kids, our babies. It is a good safety measure,” said Dallas ISD parent Aaron Higareda.
Other districts are beefing up security for the 2013-2014 school year. Earlier this month, a group of new school resource officers for the Carroll ISD were introduced. They will be armed, in every school.
“I am confident whatever comes through the door in Southlake, the Southlake campuses, these officers will be able to deal with effectively,” said Southlake Police chief Steve Mylett, on Aug. 7.
Plano ISD decided against armed officers, but the district did invest $1 million on security upgrades. There are new entrances and reception areas, so people coming in will have to go directly to the school office.