Safety upgrades highlight start of KCS school year
By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor
ALABASTER – Alabaster’s Kingwood Christian School is looking to make its students, teachers and parents feel a little safer this academic year, as the school added several safety-oriented upgrades over the summer.
At the end of the 2016-2017 school year, KCS began working to install security cameras, repave and restripe the dropoff and pickup lanes outside the school, upgrade lighting in the classrooms, install magnetic doors requiring visitors to be buzzed into the building, replace broken ceiling tiles and replace the school’s intercom system.
But the most significant change came with the hire of David Kline, the school’s new dean of students and school resource officer.
“He is our insurance policy. It adds a layer of protection and a layer of confidence that we can provide for our students, parents and faculty members,” said KCS Principal Ruth Gray. “If anything happens, we can call on him. He is serving as my right-hand man in all areas of safety and discipline.”
Kline has a lengthy history working in law enforcement. He began working as a police officer in 2002, and has spent time in patrol, SWAT and investigative divisions at multiple law enforcement agencies over the years.
He has instructed all KCS teachers on the “Run, hide, fight” program, which would go into effect in the event of an active shooter situation, and has degrees from Wallace Community College in Selma and the University of Montevallo.
Kline’s wife is a teacher at KCS, and the couple’s child attends the school.
In addition to working at KCS full-time, Kline is also working toward a master’s degree in education, and works part-time with the Jemison and Clanton police departments. Kline also will be on-hand at KCS athletic events, away games and field trips.
“I get the best of both worlds, because I’m here full-time and I still get to work part-time in law enforcement,” Kline said. “We are fortunate to be here with the kids to make sure everybody is safe and nobody is trying to prey on them.”
Gray said the upgrades have earned positive feedback from the 330 KCS students in grades kindergarten through 12th and their parents.
“We’ve had a lot of positive feedback from the parents. Everyone wants their kids to be safe, and we have that here,” Gray said. “It’s always good to have those things in pace and not need them than to not have them and need them.”