Federal grant to help fund safety upgrades in District 75

Mundelein Elementary District 75 will add and upgrade security cameras as part of planned work with a $398,394 federal grant to improve school safety and minimize and prevent violence.

The district is one of 10 Illinois entities that will receive a portion of more than $3 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Justice.

In Lake County, Zion Elementary District 6 will receive $354,375, according to grants announced recently by American senses Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth.

Grants are awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance and the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services for safety measures in and around schools. The money must be used within three years.

It includes funding for training local law enforcement to prevent student violence, technology to quickly notify local authorities in an emergency, and other tools to improve safety, according to a press release.

District 75 put together its grant application in June based on the cost estimates for the three projects. The work is estimated at $530,000. The district will pay 25%, or about $132,000 of the total, with 75% covered by the matching grant, said public relations director Peter Gill.

The three projects are:

• Upgrade of the key fob system in all school buildings, which will probably be completed in the first year.

• Add more security cameras and upgrade them all to high definition cameras. The camera server will also be upgraded. This will require additional wiring and will be completed over the next three years.

• Upgrading the intercom system.

Gill said schools will be equipped with speakers and digital clocks (internet protocol). These will be equipped with flashing lights and may display emergency broadcast notices. Intercom speakers will be placed in classrooms, hallways and outdoors.

“Like the cameras, these will include additional wiring and will be completed over a three-year period,” Gill said.

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