School Safety at Two Campuses

Bixby and Jenks high schools have slightly different approaches to combatting armed intrusions.


Kinsley Southard, Reporter

Student safety is a top priority across the country, and Bixby and Jenks high schools, often compared to each other, are not exceptions. Both have similar plans in place for armed intrusions.

Jenks and Bixby both have locks on all doors, but there are ways students can access buildings without having to have teachers open doors for them. At Jenks, students use ID badges to open doors electronically when going into buildings. Bixby uses door codes that change each month. Bixby is looking into using IDs instead of door codes, according to Principal Terry Adams.

Everyone knows about the tragic event that happened at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, in December 2012. Police departments across the country created a process to try to prevent school shootings from happening. Called the Sandy Hook Promise, people can call a hotline, download an app to their mobile devices or visit the website, The program is to make it easier for students to alert authorities if they see something suspicious.

“Every school should have a hotline,” says Adams, who helped roll out the Sandy Hook Promise at Bixby High in late November.

Jenks Principal David Beiler says his district is not familiar with the Sandy Hook program. However, the district has had its own police force since the 1990s, according to Chief Jason Smith. Beilar says Jenks prefers having its own school police because officers “work more closely” with students and administrators and they are “able to have someone available more constantly.”

Bixby schools use city police officers on their campuses.

Overall, Bixby and Jenks have similar approaches to campus safety.

“We have a culture around students and staff, ‘If you see something, say something,’” Beiler says.“We do our best to keep campus safe and have room for improvement.”

Adams adds, “Bixby schools take student safety as their No. 1 priority.”