Schools receiving funds for safety

By Erica Quednau |

Published 05/04 2014 11:12PM

Updated 05/06 2014 10:31AM

Update: 6:02 pm, 5/5/14, Monday
CHAMPAIGN -- More than $200,000 is going to Unit 4 schools to help beef up security. It's all thanks to grant money from the state.

Schools across Illinois are getting a piece of $25 million for things like reinforced doors or bulletproof windows. Champaign's school district is using its money for cameras.

"Cameras, in some ways are deterrents for people in school and also for, of course, the public at large."

That's why you can find dozens of them across Centennial High School's campus; inside and out. But, principal Greg Johnson says the system isn't perfect.

"The original cameras you had in schools a decade or so ago, had images that were real grainy. It was really hard to see what was going on."

That's why he's excited his school is one of five in the district to get an upgrade.

"The higher-quality images we can get, the better for everybody."

"We took a look, basically at our school security needs and what facilities could really use that funding."

Along with Centennial, Franklin, Jefferson and Edison middle schools will see system upgrades as well as Booker T. Washington.

"There will be more cameras, they'll be higher-quality and also, it funds the IT infrastructure that goes into running those cameras Having that as a backup if an incident were to occur."

It's just an extra measure which will let Johnson and other school leaders focus on their main goal.

"These grant funds allow us to do these things. To provide a safer environment for students so we can really just keep that focus on learning."

"I think it's going to go a long way to helping upgrade systems that we already have in place."

The grant money is also funding more than 1,000 projects around the state. Other schools to see a piece of the funding include the Decatur School District gets almost $65,000 and the UI is getting almost $700,000.
Original: 10:02 pm, 5/4/14, Sunday
ILLINOIS -- Schools are getting millions of dollars to make buildings safer. $25,000,000 is being spread throughout the state. The money is going to education for things like reinforced doors, shatter-resistant glass and locks. A little over $1 million is going to schools in our area. The UI, Eastern Illinois and Lake Land College are also getting funding.

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