Does Locking a Classroom Door Really Keep the Kids Safe?

Many school districts have implemented a locked door policy in response to the Sandy Hook school shooting. Patch users weigh in on whether or not locked doors make for safer classrooms. Share your thoughts.

Locking classroom doors during the day, with the intention of keeping kids safe from intruders, has become common practice at local schools. Some have been bolting up for a long time, and others implemented the policy after the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut reawakened questions about school safety.

But can locked doors really protect children and teachers from harm?

Do you think locking classroom doors is an effective safety measure? Do they lock the doors at your child's school? Share your thoughts and experiences below.

"It seems someone could easily blow the lock right off," said a commenter on the Lamorinda Patch Facebook page. "Security measures need to be taken from the outside in and not vice versa."

"I think it is a good idea," responds another. "Even [if] someone can blow the locks off, it slows them down. Even 30 seconds of lead time for calling the police may save 10 more lives. Plus, it should be combined with other safety measures to solve the larger problem."

"People moving between classrooms would not be able to enter a room for safety," says another commenter.

"Sounds like common sense," says a commenter on the Concord Patch Facebook page.

"It can't hurt to do it," says another.

"It's a pain to have the knocking interrupt class," says a local teacher, "but it is an option."

"Its a fantastic idea!" says a commenter on the Martinez Patch Facebook page.

"I don't believe that we are really SAFE anywhere," says another. "People can get killed or injured nowadays anywhere, grocery stores, theaters, pumping gas... but I do feel better knowing that people are more aware of this and are trying to at least keep our children secure while they are at school."

"Bullets go through doors and walls," one commenter replies. "It's a false sense of security."

"I'm not sure why we are surprised tragedies like Sandy Hook occur," says another. "Outraged and saddened yes, but not surprised. We live in a country that glorifies violence in many ways. Guaranteed safety isn't possible."

"It sounds like an overreaction... until it's your kids!" one commenter says.

Share your views on the locked classroom door policy below.

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Lloyd January 20, 2013 at 05:25 PM
This is a band-aid approach to a really large hole in our reality. Sure lock em even change them to steel doors like on planes to prevent hijackings it surely can't hurt. But what about when kids are going to school or leaving for the day or go to lunch or recess or changing classrooms between periods (they still do that I think). The real answer is keeping them out altogether but as demonstrated in the horror in Conn. a determined psychopath will get in through a window or blast a door. Schools aren't fortresses and if you want to consider spending the money to make them so it would be way more economical to offer other deterrents such as guards. There is no fool proof way to stop insanity. We need to do whatever we can to keep guns out of these disturbed peoples hands. Universal gun checks, no more loopholes, is a start, not a solution. Ultimately those of us who have guns have to be responsible to keep them out of the hands of those that shouldn't.
Brant January 20, 2013 at 06:18 PM
Lloyd, you are correct: we need to do all that we can to keep weapons out of the hands of disturbed people. The first step is to identify those people and to register them in the Federal database currently used for background checks. Improving the registration of criminals would also be a step in the right direction. Once a functioning database is established, improving the background check process would produce useful results.
Avanti Monty January 20, 2013 at 07:22 PM
I attended a parochial high school in San Francisco way back in the 50's . Our classrooms were fitted with automatically locking thick solid core fire doors with a very tiny reinforced window for viewing. They were strange to us after attending easily accessed class rooms in grammar school (we didn't require locking doors in grammar school we had Nuns nobody mess's with a nun ) The only down side I remember was being late for class It created an embarrassing disruptive entrance and a nasty look from your teacher. Why not have the secure doors its a deterrent worst case ? keeping guns out of a nut jobs hands is a given every way possible to achieve that should be enforced . My question is how do you discipline or educate " normal" people into keeping their weapons under lock and key avoiding easy access ? Normal people have tempers and hateful grudges they do drugs and alcohol easy gun access can become a disastrous option.. .
Julie January 21, 2013 at 02:02 AM
I will support anything that entails protecting our children. I gladly welcome locked classroom doors. Sure it doesn't solve the violence problem, but don't we want to be doing everything that we can to keep our kids safe.
Julie January 21, 2013 at 02:02 AM
I will support anything that entails protecting our children. I gladly welcome locked classroom doors. Sure it doesn't solve the violence problem, but don't we want to be doing everything that we can to keep our kids safe.


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