Orange County starts school year with added security

Back to school looks very different in 2019, due to the presence of big guns, bulletproof vests and metal detectors. 

Orange County leaders said they will provide added security to protect some 215,000 students. 

"We are ready to protect your children, at risk to our own lives," said Orange County Sheriff John Mina, adding that his deputies will respond to danger, even if there's no backup.

This year, school resource officers have active shooter kits, including long guns that are housed inside safes at each of the 120 shcools and real-time video access to all cameras in the district. 

"We want parents to feel comfortable and reassured," said Superintendent Dr. Barbara Jenkins. 

She explained that they will be adding more metal detection wands in middle schools and increasing social
media monitoring. 

"If you put it out on social media on a public site, it is subject to review," she said, "and if it's disruptive to any of our schools, comes under the code of concoct and will have consequences."

Students will be required to watch new code of conduct videos, warning that even joking about a school threat is a serious matter. 

"It does not get you off the hook to say you were playing and joking. It's still an offense that will be dealt with," she said.

Another video warns about the dangers of e-cigarettes and vaping on school grounds. Dr. Jenkins shared what she a "disturbing" statistic: a 78 percent increase for high school students using e-cigarettes. 

"We can't ignore that," she added.