CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- As the School Building Authority continues to design West Virginia's newest schools and take on other projects, the agency is now required to consider a major factor more than ever before: safety.
At the top of the SBA's priority list for new schools in West Virginia is shatterproof glass and lockdown buttons.
Every new school being built in the state will be equipped with a protective window film that prevents glass from being busted out, in addition to other safety factors such as a single point of entry.
At Monday's quarterly meeting, School Building Authority Executive Director Mark Manchin urged staff to take these precautions one step further and incorporate the new safety features not only in new schools being built but in any ongoing projects where extra funding is available.
The SBA is looking into ongoing projects across the state where design layouts and funding allows for the installation of new safety features.
"There have been incidences obviously, and I think in the world we live in we have to be ever vigilant in providing the safest schools we can for the state of West Virginia and in the United States," Manchin said Monday morning.
In addition to shatterproof glass "that will withstand a shotgun blast" and would allow at least three to five minutes for school staff to alert police in case of an intruder, Manchin said, the SBA is also implementing school safety features such as: