Macon Community News

The Macon Newsroom

Macon Community News

The Macon Newsroom

Macon Community News

The Macon Newsroom

Weapons detection equipment coming to all Bibb County public schools

Screen grab
Bibb County School Board President Juawn Jackson.

In an effort to keep guns and other weapons out of schools, the Bibb County Board of Education approved buying weapon detection equipment for $1.3 million at its regular meeting Thursday.

The 82 weapon scanners will be at every school and will primarily be used when students arrive in the morning, David Gowan, director of safety and risk management, told the board.

The detection system also could be used for school visitors but Gowan said that would require staff to operate it on those occasions. There was no timeline provided for when the equipment might be installed.

The district will pay for the new systems using a security and safety grant it received from the Georgia Department of Education. The technology is being ordered through Missouri-based CTI Communications Technologies, Inc. but originates from Italy-based CEIA OpenGate.

Others in Georgia doing business with CTI include Polk and Rockdale county public schools and Franklin County.

In other business Thursday, the board voted to approve construction companies to lead two major renovations.

Warren Associates will serve as construction manager at-risk to renovate the former Butler Collision Center on Eisenhower Parkway. The building will house the expansion of the district’s career and technical education pathway. An estimated cost for the work was not included in board documents, but the district will use some of the  federal COVID-related money it received  to cover the expense. At its October meeting, the board approved contracting with WM2A Architects. An estimated cost was not included in board documents.

International City Builders will serve as construction manager at-risk for renovations to Rutland High School, an estimated $6 million job, and Rutland Middle School, an estimated $4 million job, Superintendent of Operations Sam Kitchens said. The work will be paid with revenue from the 2021 Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.

Earlier Thursday, Curtis D. Adams was sworn in as the district’s new police chief. Adams most recently worked for Atlanta Public Schools as a police major and has 22 years of experience working in law enforcement.

Other business items approved at Thursday’s meeting include:

  • Graduation dates for the class of 2024. Southwest High School and the VIP Academy ceremonies are set for May 22. Graduations for Howard, Westside and Rutland high schools are set for May 23 and Central and Northeast high schools on May 24.
  • A schedule for adopting the 2025 budget and millage rate. Budget work sessions are set to take place on March 11, April 8 and May 7 with a tentative adoption set for May 16. Final adoption is set for June 20, following two public hearings June 11 and 19. The process for setting the millage rate is set to start with a tentative adoption July 18 before public hearings, if necessary, on Aug. 8 and 19. Final adoption is set for Aug. 19.

To contact Civic Journalism Fellow Laura Corley, call 478-301-5777 or email [email protected].

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