BEECH GROVE, Ind.– A local high school student is taking school security into her own hands by launching a fundraising effort for her district.
While Alyssa Hockett said she feels secure in the hallways of Beech Grove High School, she wanted to do something after looking at school shootings and threats across the country.
“It’s our security, nobody should have to feel scared or nervous going to class to get an education,” Hockett said. “Just seeing how this is growing throughout the nation, one day we may need this and I would say the same to any other school in Indiana.”
So the high school sophomore decided to do something about. She’s leading the student-effort to raise money to supplement the school’s security measures already in place.
“Just to kind of get some help with funding for extra security measures, what we’re really looking for is money to receive mechanical security,” Hockett said.
The high school principal says there is already training for staff and students and doors with double entry. They’re also increasing camera footage and having conversations with the Beech Grove Police Department about being able to be in constant communication if a crisis were to ever occur.
Hockett said they want to raise money to purchase devices that will help further secure classroom doors. The cost to outfit each classroom door in the district she estimates at about $31,500. Students are looking to raise $16,000 and get the school board to match. Hockett said they’re also contacting local businesses and alumni, and have started a Gofundme page.
“Really what strikes me about her plan is it’s more about the conversation within the community,” Beech Grove High School Principal Elizabeth Walters said. “We benefit as a school, she’s gonna benefit through the process, but her true goal is to make sure the community has a conversation about school safety because we all have to be part of that conversation.”
Beyond fundraising, Hockett says students have formed the group S.T.O.R.M, or Special Team of Role Models. Their goal is to speak out against bullying to middle school students.
For the teen, the efforts transcend any political stances.
“It’s not fitting anyone’s agenda, just regardless how you feel on any political subject, this is just raising security in the schools,” she said.
Hockett said they’re also looking at ways to get material to help protect door windows from bullets. Any extra funds she said will go towards things like more security cameras.