New Michigan high school designed with shooter in mind

January 08, 2020, 1:55 PM

There's a foreboding quality behind the veneer of a shiny new West Michigan high school. It was designed with a shooter in mind.

Fruitport High, near Grand Haven, has a number of subtle protective features to help students and staff more easily identify a potential shooter and buy time in the event of a shooting, The Detroit News reports. They including curved hallways to limit sight lines, protective "wing walls" that can shield up to 30 students and staff, impact-resistant windows and fire doors that lock with a smartphone.

But subtle means subtle, says Superintendent Bob Szymoniak:

"We didn’t do anything that makes it look like a security measure. We don’t want the kids to think about it when they are in the building. We want them to think they are in a really cool learning environment,” Szymoniak said.

The News quotes experts as saying most new K-12 schools are built to prioritize security. 

Fruitport high was paid for by a voter-approved bond and a $400,000 Michigan State Police grant. It's unclear how much was spent on the security features specifically.

Part of the building opened this month. Construction will be complete next year.

Read more:  The Detroit News

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