Full safety for students

The Convent of the Sacred Heart administration has made the decision to implement several new security polices. Over Christmas vacation, new alarm and security systems were added to the Sacred Heart campus to ensure full protection for both students and faculty.
In an email addressing the parents of the Sacred Heart community, Head of School Mrs. Pamela Juan Hayes gave detailed descriptions of the new security measures that were added to the campus.

With the addition of the new intercom and camera system, students must wait to be buzzed inside the building by a security member.
Sarah Jackmauh ’15

Mrs. Hayes explained that all outdoor exits will be locked during the day. The door of the mansion building will open at 6 am, while the doors of the science wing will be opened for a short time period from 7:30 am to 8:30 am. To ensure protection, these doors will remain shut from 3:15 pm to 4 pm.  The outside doors of the Student Dining Room will be locked at all times.
The email also mentioned that the exit in the Upper School Core Center will remain closed. This has caused some unrest among Upper School students.  Previously a main way to access the Student Dining Room, girls used this passage to avoid walking through the hallways of the Upper School in order to reach the lunchroom with more ease.
“I think it is good for safety but it is a hassle to not exit through the core center door,” sophomore Priscilla Valdez said.
Many of the doorways around the Sacred Heart campus have also been updated with new technology. All main entrances to the school have been equipped with an intercom. To enter the building, the caller button must be pressed and a staff member located at the security desk in the mansion will be able to open the door through this electronic system. A camera is also included on this new intercom.
“I think the most notable change is that all the doors are now locked from the outside and you cannot get into the building unless you are buzzed in or if you are a faculty member and have a security card,” Upper School Dean of Students Ms. Karen Panarella said.
Faculty and staff at Sacred Heart now have security cards, which allow them to swipe their key to unlock the door. Only faculty members have the access keys. When the doors are locked, students must be buzzed inside by security.
“I feel so much safer with the new precautions, so I think that it is definitely worth the wait to get into the school,” sophomore Mari Riera said.
The school has more regulations about entering and exiting the building, and many members of the community agree that it has made the school safer.
“The new system offers a sense of security for all students, faculty and parents,” Upper School Assistant Dean of Students Ms. Maura O’Grady said.