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Board of Education Moves Forward with Improved School Security

News Editor

At the Dec. 12 Dade County Board of Education meeting, Jeremy Roerdink (director of federal programs and safety) gave an update on access control to Dade Elementary, Davis Elementary, and Dade Middle.

Earlier that day, the school board also entered an executive session for Superintendent Josh Ingle’s mid-year evaluation.

Several other topics were discussed and added to the consent agenda, but most of the discussion centered around Roerdink’s presentation.

Security updates to Dade County High School are nearing completion, so the next step is to follow suit with the other three schools. The school system received a grant of $50,000 for the upgrades which will be applied to the Dade Elementary portion of the cost – $128,608 will cost the school system only $78,608.

The Davis Elementary bid is $85,355 while the Dade Middle bid is $102,414. Roerdink explained that Dade Elementary is more expensive to update because, “There are all kinds of exterior doors. It’s a school that’s been added onto over time.”

The board confirmed that these expenses have been budgeted for, and once the bids are accepted, the prices will be locked in to avoid any rising costs due to supply chain issues.

While work on the high school continues, the board is confident that it would have been completed already had supply chain issues not delayed items. The updates to the high school’s security were approved in July of this year.

Regarding this work, Roerdink reported, “Wiring has been run throughout the building. They have installed half of the motion sensors, push buttons and maglocks. All 30 prop alarms are installed, and 5 out of 13 cameras have been installed.”

Ingle explained, “All three of these schools will be very similar to the high school, particularly in double entry ways. One door gets a maglock and a door prop alarm, the other door has a blank, meaning you stick a key in it and it still won’t open.”

When this project is completed, all schools will have a key fob box with classroom keys inside. Only certain individuals such as police and first responders will have access so that in the case of a lockdown, they can still enter classrooms.

The board approved the bids and moving forward with security updates on the three schools.

The technology team requested 18 new desktops for the central office. Of three quotes, the cheapest was $19,710 with a three year warranty. The price will increase by $300 per desktop on Jan. 1. The board approved this purchase to be made before the first of the year.

Ingle recommended continuing to serve as the fiscal agent for Dade First Family Connection, and the board approved.

Ingle also discussed fundraisers, saying, “The board approves fundraisers twice a year, once in August and once in December…There were about 24 fundraisers submitted this time. We’ve asked the principals to communicate to teachers that they run these fundraisers through the end of August.”

The board approved this round of fundraisers.

Lastly, all board members voted in favor of extending Ingle’s contract as superintendent. His next term is July 1, 2023 through June 30, 2025.

The personnel report is as follows:

  • Resigned: Bethany Miller (DMS basketball coach)
  • Hired: Terrie O’Donnell (paraprofessional), Vaughn Gordy (full-time custodian), Bonnie Harris (business services assistant, transfer from school bookkeeper)
  • Substitutes: Sabrinia Cloud, Durrell Christopher Dee
  • Other: David Lyons (DMS girls basketball coach), David Tate (DMS girls assistant coach)

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