MASON COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - What happened in Newtown, Conn. close to two months ago has had many Americans second guessing the safety of schools. And while the Fayette County Public Schools system has had its own police force in place for decades, other districts are now starting to consider similar steps.
Mason County Sheriff's Deputy Terry Fryman tries to make it to lunch at one of the district's schools each day. WKYT caught up with him at Mason County Middle School.
"Not a day goes by teacher says man we're so glad to see y'all here. Thank you. Keep up the good work," Deputy Fryman explained.
Sheriff Patrick Boggs set up this year's budget in reaction to what happened at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn. He's now paying overtime to deputies, asking them to spend the extra hours on the job in the classroom.
"We want to bring back a good guy mentality for all the children. We're there to help," noted the sheriff, "we're doing a generic security audit. Checking doors that should be locked. Coming up with hopefully inexpensive ideas for the school systems to put in place to beef up the security."
Mason County Middle School Principal Justin Moore told WKYT he appreciates the extra law enforcement stopping by. "It really has been a little bit calmer the last couple weeks because after the tragedy occurred everybody was very skittish, very nervous, very difficult, it was very tense."
The district already has plans in place to bring in a full time school resource officer next year. The Maysville Police Department has had a similar program in place throughout the Mason County School District for more than ten years.
In other parts of the state, Laurel County Schools have increased the amount of officers patrolling their campuses. District leaders in Madison County are training principals to handle various scenarios involving students' safety.