CONWAY, SC – (WBTW) Two years ago, the school district began using a private security company for armed security in all of the middle and high schools in the municipality.
Last school year was the first year there was an armed security presence in all elementary, middle and high schools.
Horry County Schools also have School Resource Officers in all middle and high schools; these officers work through local law enforcement agencies.
Middle and high schools in the municipality have metal detectors and a clear bag policy at all athletic events.
David Beaty is the coordinator of safety and security for Horry County Schools, he tells News13, the district looks at nationwide tragedies while preparing safety plans.
“Even if it doesn’t occur on a school campus we evaluate it and take a look at the circumstances associated with that event and then we determine if there is something we need to modify as far as our protocols go,” Beaty said.
Beaty says safety is everyone’s responsibility and urges any student who hears of a potential threat, to go to a responsible adult. If a parent hears of a potentially dangerous situation after school hours, Beaty says to contact law enforcement.
Although Beaty says Horry County Schools are prepared for intruders through routine drills, he says students and staff are also safe in schools for other emergencies, like weather.
“We have family and friends who work in these schools, and we have family and friends with children at these schools,” Beaty said. “We have a personally vested interest in the safety of our campuses.”