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Greg HewittBy Greg Hewitt
(Story updated to include KSDK apology.)
A KSDK news staffer working on a story about school security issues triggered a “precautionary lockdown” Thursday afternoon at Kirkwood High School.

KSDK issued a statement  saying that an employee had visited five area schools throughout the day as part of a “continuing investigation” of school safety issues.

According to news reports, Kirkwood High School administrators became concerned when a man entered the school building and made his way to the office after walking through the campus unimpeded for several minutes.  Once the man arrived at the school’s office, he reportedly failed to identify himself as a member of the news media before asking to speak with a school security official.  The man did leave his name and cell number, however he could not be reached by the school after leaving the office in search of a restroom.

And this is a key point for many.

It was the school’s inability to confirm his identity with KSDK which led the school to issue a lockdown.  It was lifted at approximately 2pm.

The Parkway School District also reported a similar incident yesterday at one of their elementary schools.   In that case, the school alerted security and KSDK  who,  according to a district spokesman, confirmed that the station had sent someone to the school with a hidden camera.

As you might expect, parents of Kirkwood students are taking to social media to express their displeasure with KSDK.

One parent of a Kirkwood High student tweeted:

“our child texting you from a dark room, against a wall while doors are being ‘tested’. Whoa. Real @ksdknews = sad.

In fairness, there are also a fair number of comments  supporting the station’s right to uncover flaws in the school’s security methods.

What do you think?  Did KSDK needlessly provoke a lockdown at the school,  or perform an important public service by pointing out potential security problems?


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