After delays, G4S is now in the process of installing equipment at several schools.
Guam – Some Guam Department of Education schools are now being outfitted with security equipment.
GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez said, “We’re working closely with the vendor now that we’ve started installation I think we’ll pick up momentum.”
After more two years since the Secure Our Schools Act, the $800-thousand contract was awarded to G4S in February, when they were also expected to begin installing security equipment at the schools and get the first phase done by April. However, Fernandez explained that issues involving permitting and waiting for the equipment to arrive delayed the process.
“The 26th was the first day of installation. We are working in readjusting the schedule so we can accelerate the installation and more schools in order to meet our timeline to complete all schools by February 17,” he stated.
Initially, according to Fernandez, they mapped out the plan to get six schools outfitted with security equipment within 60 days, which means it would take about a year to get security cameras up at all 35 schools. However, because of the delays, they now have to adjust the schedule. Fernandez said the equipment ranges from intrusion alarms to security cameras.
“Intrusion alarms are another key piece. Security cameras are going to be a part of it especially for the schools that make the most sense. It’s helpful for investigative purposes. I’m more supportive of these intrusion alarms which I hope would be more preventative so you don’t see a break ins take place because once these alarms go off, you’re alerting the monitoring agency and generating a response, those perpetrating the intrusions will decide to just leave without doing any damage. It’ll be a combination of those types of traditional and higher tech equipment,” he said.
Although they can’t name the schools where security equipment are being installed at first, Fernandez tells PNC that most of the schools up North are priority because they are the frequent targets for vandalism, break-ins and thefts. The project includes installment, monitoring services and two-year maintenance. However, according to Fernandez, they don’t have enough funds to install security equipment all around the schools.
He stated, “The dollar amount that was made available and the number of schools we have to serve, we won’t be able to provide every single square inch with security but we are definitely focused on high priority areas of the schools based on our experience with the past so focused on protecting our high value assets.”