Franklin County schools to get "active shooter switches"

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Since news of the shooting broke, we've been checking with area school districts to see what they do to protect your children.

In Franklin County, the school district is getting ready to test active shooter switches newly installed in all schools.

"God forbid anything like this would happen in our community," said Assistant Superintendent Charlie Preston.

The deadly shooting today at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut has stunned the country and has schools across the nation taking a second look at their security. In Franklin County, it's a process that has been going on for months.

"But the fact that it happens in so many places, nobody is in a position to say well this can't happen here because it can," said Preston.

The school system has been working with local law enforcement on what they call an active shooter switch for each school.

"Press the button and it automatically sends a response right to our 911 dispatch center," said School Resource Officer Monty Chappell.

They say it will cut down on response time. OffIcials did a run through on the system yesterday and plan more testing next week.

There's a numbering system for hallways, video cameras throughout the building, and eyes on every student, so they can watch what's happening inside from the outside.

"It's something obviously we never want to use and you hope it never comes to pass, but it is something that's unfortunately a necessity we feel like in today's world," said Preston.

But these officials say today isn't about their schools.

"My heart goes out to all the families, kids, the school staff, and everybody in that community in Connecticut. There's nothing you could do or say to make me feel better," said Preston.

Although they say it's an example of why they are doing what they are.

With this active shooter system, officials say there is no need to call 911. The alarm that goes out to responders is different than a fire alarm. That way it is not confused as a different emergency.

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