Five-year-old walks out of IPS School 54, mother wants more safety measures

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INDIANAPOLIS,Ind. - An Indianapolis Public Schools parent is questioning student safety in the district after she says her five-year-old son was able to walk out of school, in a high crime area.

Eleanor Northington said she received a voicemail from IPS School 54 last Friday notifying her of an incident involving her son.  When she called back, she learned the kindergartener managed to make it out of the building.

"Only reason he was found was because a staff member happened to be looking out the window," Northington said. "I don't understand how a five-year-old was unsupervised. I left him under the supervision of trained staff."

While IPS confirms a staff member looked out a window and saw the child, district officials say teachers had been already notified to look for Northington's son.

School 54 is right near 10th and Rural, an area that's been plagued by violent crime.

"I just thought all the thoughts," Northington said. "What could've happened? It's a high-crime area. So many kids go missing every day."

CBS4 reached out to IPS about security protocol. A spokesperson said they do have security on site, but not enough staffing to monitor every door. The spokesperson also said a radio call did go out to all teachers when the five-year-old left his classroom. Both parents were contacted immediately after the incident, according to IPS.

Despite the security plans in place, Northington said she would like to see additional security measures to protect all students.

"I think alarms should be on the front of the doors, there should be someone watching the doors," she said. "You can't get in but he was able to get out."

After CBS4 spoke to Northington and IPS Thursday, the School 54 principal reached out to this mother. A meeting is scheduled for Friday.

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