Davenport School Board speeds up security improvements, talks school walkouts

DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC)- The Davenport School Board voted to speed up front entry security projects throughout the district on Monday Night as part of the long range facilities plan.

In that plan, an estimated $800,000 of front entrance improvements will be finished by August. The project was supposed to take three more years but Dr. Tate asked to speed it up after the school shooting in Parkland Florida.

They'll be strengthening front doors by having scan in procedures and allow office staff to let visitors in.

Also on Monday's agenda was discussion about school walkouts. Student board members say students will leave class at 10 a.m. and have 17 minutes of silences plus 12 minutes of speeches before returning to class.

Dr. Tate says it will be an unexcused absence for students, but staff will not stop students from leaving.

"I think it's respectful on both sides," Dr. Tate said. "This is a student led event and I think they should lead it and work it how they want to. Our caution and worry is that once you get outside there's no counter revolution because there could be."

Dr. Tate says staff will be watching students for safety reasons.

"You have the right to stand up for what you believe in," said Board Member Julie DeSalvo. "As long as it is respectful, as long as it doesn't hurt anyone and as long as it is safe and not illegal."

Davenport is one of dozens of schools in the area with planned walkouts. Intermediate students will not be allowed to walk out, according to Dr. Tate.