Buzz In Entry System Video Transcript

Steve Edwards: Hi, I'm Steve Edwards, Frederick County Public Schools Coordinator of Policy and Communications, and we wanted to take this opportunity to share with you some information about the enhanced security measures that we have at all of our elementary schools here in Frederick County, and how you can gain entrance to our school in a safe and secure way. We're here at Greenwood Mill Elementary School, but all of our elementary schools have similar entrances, so what we're going to share with you right now is true at any of our elementary schools. Although the exact location of some of the equipment may be slightly different, the process to enter the school building is the same. During the 2013-2014 school year, Frederick County Public Schools installed a buzz-in entry system at all of our elementary schools. The system is proven to be an enhancement to security and allows us to keep our students and staff members safe and secure inside of our buildings while at the same time making our buildings welcoming to parents, volunteers and others who may visit them during the school day. The system is quite simple. As you begin to enter the thoroughfare to the front doors of the school, you'll notice a call box and all of the boxes are indicated by a sign that's right above them. It includes both English and Spanish, asking you to press the call button in order to enter the school. The box itself is rather simple and there's only one button on it, one call button, so it's easy to know what to do, and you just push that button and then the secretary or an office staff member inside will greet you. They'll ask you for your name and the purpose of your visit. Once you state that, they will then grant you entry into the school.

*Steve Edwards pushes the call button.*

Secretary: "Good morning. Welcome to Greenwood Mill Elementary. Could you please state your name and purpose for your visit today?"

Steve Edwards: "Hi, this is Steve Edwards I have a meeting with the principal."

Secretary: "Yes, Mr. Edwards, please come in."

Steve Edwards: Now if you happen to hit the call button and there's no response, it could be because one of the office staff members is on the phone or dealing with another parent or a member of the staff. So if that happens and, after a few minutes, there's not a response to you pushing the call button, you'll just want to push that call button again so that they can know that you're here. One other thing that I want to mention is that if they are unable to identify or see you through our surveillance system prior to opening the door, in addition to asking your name and the purpose of your visit, the staff member may ask you to move. They may ask you to move back or to the left or right so that they can get you into our surveillance system and they can see who you are and make sure that there isn't any issue or safety concern. As she said, once you push the button and they grant you access to the building, the doors are locked at all times at the front of the building and are not opened until the secretary hits a unit inside to open those doors.

*Steve Edwards enters the school building.*

Steve Edwards: Once you're buzzed into the school and given access through the front door after utilizing the call box, you'll enter a vestibule area. You'll notice that the doors to the main portion of the school are locked at all times during the school day as is the door to the main office. All of the visitors to Frederick County Public Schools are required to first report to the main office so when you get into this area, the office staff will have one more opportunity to assure that you are who you said you were when you were outside, and then grants you access to the office. One point that is important is that if there are multiple visitors that are arriving at the building at the same time, they each have to go through this process. So it is not okay for a visitor to buzz in, be given access to the building, and then to hold the door open for other parents or other visitors to come in as well. If that does occur, the office staff will ask those who did not buzz in to go back outside and to go through the process. And this is perhaps a bit of an inconvenience in some people's view, but really, the safety and security of our students and staff is of paramount importance and that's why we have this process in place and we require all visitors to go through the process. Again, once you get into the vestibule, the office staff will be looking for you and then once they recognize that the situation is safe and it's okay for you to enter, they'll grant you access to the front office where you'll go in, sign in and then go on about your business that you have in the school.