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Unlocked Doors Were "First Line of Defense" at Uvalde School

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Unlocked Doors Were "First Line of Defense" at Uvalde School

K-12 Education Design Leader Todd Ferking weighed in with the Associated Press on functional and historical issues that contributed to the disaster at Uvalde. Experts testified that the massacre began after the 18-year-old gunman entered the school through a door that could only be locked from the outside, then got inside a classroom with a broken lock.

Building entrance viewed from driveway. The building dark brick with wood panel details

Securing doors is a tenet of school safety drills, and the issues displayed here are raising alarms among experts and politicians. Ferking expanded on the historical circumstances that influenced this design, and the recent evolutions put into practice.

The tragedy at Columbine led to an overhaul in school construction, said Ferking. Today, most new classrooms lock from inside via a key or thumb turn. Furthermore, most exterior doors are locked during school hours, except during drop-off and pick-up, he continued.

“I can promise you, [that school] is not the only one in this country that you can’t lock the doors from the inside,” said Mo Canady, the executive director of the National Association of School Resource Officers.

Follow this story as it continues to unfold with AP News.

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