Phenix City students, teachers will be watched closely with high-tech security system

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The Phenix City Board of Education has approved spending $564,000 to upgrade safety at Central High School and Central Freshman Academy — and the new security system also can be used as an educational tool.

During this summer, a 360-degree camera, an alert system and a microphone will be installed in all classrooms for grades 9-12, Phenix City Schools superintendent Randy Wilkes announced in a news release Friday.

“The new security measures, though timely, are not in response to the recent tragedy in Parkland, Florida,” the news release says.

Wilkes said the current bell and intercom systems at the high school and academy “intermittently operate appropriately, and the new bell, intercom, camera, sound and alert system is all-inclusive and turn-key.”

The board’s contract for the equipment and installation is with Dooley Education Solutions of Athens, Ga.

“In the near future, the two schools’ intercom systems will allow each office to communicate with the other school,” the news release says. “The alert system will give teachers the ability to instantly contact school administrators in the event of an emergency. The teacher microphone and student microphone will allow classroom participants to more easily communicate. The 360-degree cameras may be used to record model lessons to share with colleagues and school leaders, record classroom instruction for absent students and monitor behaviors.”

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