(Un)Fenced in

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Oliver Gallop, graphics editor

With the recent tragedy in Newtown, Conn., so horrible and powerful, a fence surrounding Beverly has never sounded like a better idea. Last year when the issue was up for debate in front of the school board, many disliked the idea because it would defile our old, spanish-styled school and possibly make graduation ceremonies difficult. Board members and community figures successfully applied their arguments against the proposal and Beverly was not fenced in.

In this day and age, security within schools is by no means unusual. Schools across the country have strict security at their entrances and even two Beverly Hills Unified School District schools, El Rodeo and Beverly Vista, have implemented cameras and mechanical gates. Beverly, however, does not have these features.

There are copious entrances that are completely open to anyone and multiple routes for accessing different parts of the school. While the design and architecture of the school are efficient, they were not designed with limited access in mind. We have security guards at some entrances, while others remain unguarded. There have been scares in the past few years regarding unwelcomed guests in school and, now more than ever, they have to stop.

A fence would not be detrimental to the appearance of our school. Sure, there would be a somewhat obstructed view of the front lawn, but the rest of the school would appear unchanged. Believe it or not, fence technology is advanced enough to make parts removable in case of a large school event like graduation. Problem solved.

The fence would keep intruders out better than any other form of practical security. Fewer entrances to the school would allow security guards or cameras to keep a closer watch over who comes in and out. Overall, the fence seems like the obvious choice for the protection of more than 2,000 students, teachers and faculty.

Money is a factor, as it is in practically everything, but I’m sure that larger donations will come because of the recent increase in demand for security at schools. The project will take lots of time and money, but the safety and peace of mind that it will provide to students and adults is worth every penny.

For some reason, the idea of a fence has caused much controversy, even though the idea is simply common sense. This modest amount of metal will go a long way. #enclosebeverly2013

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