Jacksonville, Fla. -- The new school year in Duval County is just three weeks away, but when it comes to safety and security big changes are in store.
In the proposed budget more than $25 million is allocated under the heading of security. Last year the same category had a price of tag of around $4 million.
"I think as a district we have to become much more proactive in our approach to discipline and safety and not wait for tragedy or even simple fights or altercations to happen," said Superintendent Nikolai Vitti.
One change has principals being given the green light to hire security guards.
Principal Kim Bays at San Pablo Elementary expects to make the hire any day now. She welcomes an extra set of eyes and hands to help out.
Duties, she says, will have the guard involved in checking parent identifications and walking the property of the Jacksonville Beach campus.
A Dean of Discipline is a new position that will be added at local middle and high schools.
The dean will be responsible for making sure students understand the district's code of conduct.
Debbie Taylor is a mother who has a 10th grader enrolling at Fletcher High. She welcomes the change.
"Not most, but some students come in and there is an attitude towards teachers," said Taylor.
Discipline says the superintendent is important.
"A dean of discipline is someone who connects with kids to be proactive," said Vitti.
The district has also allocated nearly $9 million to handle in school suspensions. The program will be in place at every middle and high school.
First Coast News