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Muncie Community Schools to implement "random security checks," locker searches

Muncie Community Schools will now conduct its own background checks on school security job candidates prior to them being offered a position, WRTV Investigates has learned.
Posted at 11:35 PM, Jan 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-17 23:35:17-05

MUNCIE — Muncie Community Schools says it plans to start random security checks and locker searches at its high school and two middle schools.

The checks will include "wanding" students with handheld metal detectors and using K-9 officers to determine if any illegal items are being stored in lockers.

WRTV INVESTIGATES: Schools use metal detector wands sparingly three years after state issued them

The procedure received unanimous approval Tuesday.

In September, a Muncie Central High School student was placed in police custody after a handgun was found inside a locker and backpack.

To improve school safety, the state distributed 3,436 handheld metal detectors to 422 school corporations back in 2019 for a total cost to taxpayers of $352,718.

Muncie Community Schools ordered 17 handheld metal detectors.

"We still have the metal detectors we were issued and we use them for various special events (most recently, the senior after prom). They are in the office of our security director and used when needed," MCS told WRTV in June 2022.

The district says the new protocols will be conducted by school administrators and security team members.

On May 24, Muncie Community Schools announced it was partnering with private security firm Legacy Life Security Solutions. The total cost of using the outside security firm is $675,000 a year.

MCS says 15 employees of Legacy Life have all gone through School Resource Officer training as well as de-escalation, active shooter and cultural competency training.

"Muncie schools are not dangerous at all, but we’re taking these steps as additional deterrents that I think parents will appreciate,” Robert Scaife, the owner of Legacy Life Solutions, said. “I have family in the elementary, middle school and high school, and I’m confident that they’re safe.”

WRTV INVESTIGATES: Muncie Community Schools will do its own background checks as former contracted security officer charged | Most Indiana elementary schools do not have a school resource officer

The district says the frequency of the security checks will be determined by administrators and are "expected to begin soon."

You can read more from the district about its plans here.

WRTV Investigates Kara Kenney contributed to this report.