High School Graduations in South Florida Will Include Metal Detectors

High School Graduations in South Florida Will Include Metal Detectors

Parents and other guests attending high school graduation ceremonies in South Florida will have to go through metal detectors to enter the venue.

Parents and guests attending high school graduation ceremonies in South Florida will have to go through metal detectors to enter the venue.

Graduation ceremonies in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties will also require guests to undergo bag searches and wands used by security staff for secondary screenings. Broward and Miami-Dade schools have used metal detectors at previous graduation ceremonies, but Palm Beach County School Board members decided to add the extra security precaution this year.

The Broward County school district chose to move the graduations of its largest high schools, Cypress Bay and Marjory Stoneman Douglas, to the BB&T Center to accommodate large crowds. The plan calls for the center to host all Stoneman Douglas graduations through 2021 to allow all students present at the campus during the Feb. 2018 mass shooting to invite as many guests as they’d like. In 2022, the school’s graduations will return to a smaller venue.

Broward’s school district’s cost projections included metal detectors and extra security. Commencement ceremonies at six sites are expected to cost $423,795 total.

Palm Beach County will be holding three more days of ceremonies than it did last year, reducing the number of graduations per day in order to allow more time for any lines created by the metal detectors. Palm Beach graduation guests will undergo a bag check, walk through one of eight metal detectors and potentially be inspected using a wand if necessary.

Twenty school district police officers and Sheriff’s deputies will also be present at the fairgrounds. Students and staff will not be required to pass through the metal detectors, according to Eric Stern, the district’s graduation administrator.

Parents told the Sun Sentinel that they appreciated the increased security measures.

“Honestly, in light of the myriad of school shootings, I feel relieved and comforted that there will be detectors,” said Ellari Mirabel, whose daughter will graduate from Dreyfoos School of the Arts. “It is a sad state of affairs but unfortunately they are necessary for the safety of the graduates as well as all those there.”

About the Author

Jessica Davis is the Associate Content Editor for 1105 Media.

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