Baldwin Public Schools Adopt Boot Security in All Buildings

It’s one powerful way to keep those with the worst intentions out of classrooms, keeping our children safe…

That’s why another school is picking up the Boot.

The Boot is a fail-safe that bolts a door in place, making it impossible to open.

It has now been installed in nearly 60 school systems.

The Lockdown Company stopped in at Baldwin Public Schools today to install the Boot in every building.

9&10’s Cody Boyer and photojournalist Jeff Blakeman joined the people who brought the security feature to Lake County to see how it works.

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"It’s going to make the bad guy maybe think twice about even coming to this school," says Rob Couturier, owner of the Lockdown Company and inventor of the Boot.

Ninety-nine doors throughout Baldwin Public Schools just got harder to break through…

It’s a brand new security feature that aims to give bad guys the boot.

"This school is ready if something should happen," Couturier says. “Stiles [Simmons] did his homework. He called other superintendents, talked to other superintendents that have our products already installed and we got the phone call back to…they’d like to move forward.”

Today, every classroom got its own boot thanks to a team made up of Lake County Sheriff Dennis Robinson, superintendent Stiles Simmons and Rob Couturier…the man who invented it.

“When I first brought it up to the superintendent, he was a little cold because he didn’t know anything about it," Robinson says. "So I called the owner of the company and asked him to come in and do a demo. Once they saw it, they were pretty well convinced that that was something that they really wanted to check into.”

"It’s always important to ensure the safety of our staff and students," Simmons says. "By installing the Boot, we’re just adding another layer of protection."

The superintendent got to test out the first one.

"It’s pretty strong," Simmons says. "Someone strong enough, someone angry enough, someone with a weapon that’s powerful enough could penetrate our normal locking system, but the Boot has shown that it can stop the angriest and maybe the strongest intruders."

Using the Boot might seem like it requires a lot of work but it actually doesn’t at all.

Just pull it right out of the pocket installed near the classroom door, shut the door and you are able to put it right in the slot at the door’s base.

Only police can access it from the outside.

“We as law enforcement are the only ones that can open that from the outside in a matter of seconds," Robinson says. “Everybody says it can’t happen to us. Well, look at everybody that’s had disasters strike them, somebody’s come into the school and the devastation it causes.”

No matter how hard you pull or push, it’s not going to open.

"Just because we are a small community in rural Michigan doesn’t mean it can’t happen to us," Robinson says. “We find a door that’s not locked and when you come down to why, maybe a substitute doesn’t have a key, doesn’t know where the janitor is, the door doesn’t get locked. With this Boot, there’s no question about it.”

The Lockdown Company also helped the school with a $3,500 grant for the boots.

Others can adopt doors with donations soon to repay the school with an upcoming Adopt-a-Door program.

“I’m going to write the first check for the superintendent for the first door out of my own personal checking account," Robinson says. "Anyone who wants to do that, stand by for a week or so and we’ll have it on our website on how they can come in and donate and adopt a door, also.”

“I think it’s big," Simmon says. "Our community is very supportive of the school, very supportive of our children. I’m pretty sure that they will be willing to do any and everything to support the Adopt-a-Door campaign once we get that off the ground.”

Ultimately, the school says these boots are worth it.

"When you are in a panic situation, you lose all of your dexterity when you are panicking," Couturier says. "You can’t use your fingers, you can’t unlock doors, you can’t do a lot of things so the Boot was clearly designed for all large motor skills and super easy."

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