After voters approved the Fort Smith Public Schools millage in May, the school board proceeded with district safety by the district’s first school security director.
Taking office on Nov. 19, Bill Hollenback will assume the 15,000 students within the school district to ensure safety.
Former Sebastian County Sheriff, Hollenback decided against re-election and accepted the new school district security director position.
Along with the new position, the school district added three certified security personnel to the payroll at the beginning of the school year.
“As our school is now, Southside has way too many open access points, anyone can walk in at anytime during the day; Therefore, I am all for greater security and restricting access, to protect teachers and students, allowing us to focus on what we are here for, which is education,” English teacher Laura Keener said.
Along with the appointment of the new director, the millage allocates for several safety measures such as alarms and accessibility for all campuses. The plan also allocates money to securing walls and doors at multiple elementary schools.
“One of the top priorities for the upgrades from the millage money is to increase security at Southside. When we remodel, we can expect controlled access points for entry into the school.The district has also hired safety officers for the junior highs,” assistant principal Steve Arnold said.
As director, Hollenback will coordinate all district safety officers and will create plans to improve building entrances.