Security guards from private companies and higher fences will be installed in public schools, education minister, Costas Hambiaouris, announced on Wednesday, the possibility of installing security cameras is also on the table.
The fencing off of public schools, the installation of intercoms, placing guards in kindergartens and primary schools from 7am to 8am and issuing authorisation cards allowing for the collection of children during school hours, were the new safety measures approved on Tuesday by the cabinet.
Regarding the security guards, “a call for tenders will be made and we will then proceed to purchase services from private companies whose staff will be properly trained, while school security guards will have specific duties and responsibilities,” Hambiaouris said after a meeting at the ministry of education on Wednesday.
Fences 2.5 metres high will be erected and intercoms installed he said.
“We are also assessing whether the installation of security cameras in some schools is needed,” he said.
Further safety checks and measures will also need to be taken, as it emerged in the meeting on Wednesday that a large number of schools do not have certificates for fire safety and building suitability.
Hambiaouris added that neighbourhood watches would also be strengthened.
The need to upgrade security in public schools was highlighted two weeks ago, when a man walked into a primary school in Larnaca and convinced two 11-year-old boys to follow him. The man later said he was planning to hold the boys to ransom. The boys were found within hours.