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KSDK Investigation on School Safety in Kirkwood Reveals Journalists Are The Worst

Categories: Media

KSDK released this statement after uproar following its story:
NewsChannel 5 recognizes the importance of safety in our schools. As part of a continuing investigation this afternoon, we visited five local schools.

One of our employees assigned to this investigative report visited Kirkwood High School. He entered and walked his way toward the office, asking a teacher for directions after a few minutes. There, he asked if he might discuss the school's security. He identified himself by name and gave the office his phone number.

When the security official could not be reached, our employee left the premises without escort.

Approximately an hour later -- after our visit -- the high school was put on lock down. This lock down certainly was not the intent of our visit.

We will report this story tonight on NewsChannel 5 at 10 p.m.

NewsChannel 5 will continue to be vigilant when it comes to the safety of our schools and your children within.

Kirkwood School District Superintendent Tom Williams had his own stuff to say:

Dear KSD Families and Staff Members,

I wanted to provide this update to the lockdown situation at Kirkwood High School today:

At approximately 11:50 a.m. an unknown male came into the school office at Kirkwood High School and asked to speak to the school resource officer (SRO). The SRO wasn't available and the man gave his name and number. The man asked to use the restroom. The secretary directed him to the restroom, but the man walked down the hall and turned into a different hallway. At that point, the secretary became concerned the request to use the bathroom was a ruse to access the building and she immediately called our SRO. The SRO attempted to call the man to confirm that he had left the campus, but didn't receive an answer. The man's voicemail stated that he was a Ch. 5 reporter.

At that point, Ginger Cayce was notified called the news desk at Ch. 5 (multiple times) to confirm it was a reporter. The news desk wouldn't confirm or deny that it was a Ch. 5 reporter. Ms. Cayce told the news desk that we would have to go into lockdown if we couldn't get this confirmed. When it couldn't be confirmed, we had to go into lockdown.

We believe Ch. 5 should have notified the school office immediately after the "test" was completed. This would have helped our school improve security measures without going to the extreme measure of a lockdown and the panic and disruption it caused.

We will take this opportunity to review our safety measures and protocols and make changes where necessary.

We are obviously thankful all of our students and staff are safe, and appreciate your concerns and patience as we sorted through this difficult situation today. As always the safety and welfare of our students continues to be our highest priority.

Follow Lindsay Toler on Twitter at @StLouisLindsay. E-mail the author at Lindsay.Toler@RiverfrontTimes.com.



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