The Browne Administration will be looking at ways to deploy new technology and strategies that will stop or reduce school break-ins, a number of which have occurred over the summer holiday.
On a weekly basis, there are reports of break-ins, thefts and vandalism at some of the Nation’s education institutions.
Therefore, Director of Education Clare Browne; President of the Antigua & Barbuda Union of Teachers Casroy Charles; and General Secretary of the Union Sharon Kelsick met with the Executive during its Wednesday sitting to address the issue of school plants’ security and the security of teachers and students.
It was noted that while the Ministry of Works is responsible for school security, it is not possible to have a physical human presence in sufficient numbers at each school, every day, for 24 hours.
As a result, there is a plan to ensure that new technology is deployed to secure all plants and their valuables 24 hours a day: This week’s Cabinet Notes say, “The construction of strong rooms, likened to a bank vault, is contemplated for storage of valuables.”
Union and Education officials, along with representatives from the Ministry of Works, will meet to discuss a reasonable alternative. But, in the meantime, it was agreed that dark areas on the school plants will be lit.
The Teachers Union and the staff will help to determine how many and which areas of the school plant should have extra lighting.
The Notes say that all schools are also to be fenced so that access in and out of the school plant can be monitored.