Annie E. Vinton Elementary School in Mansfield is being used as a voting location Tuesday while school is in session, drawing ire from some of the parents whose children attend the school.
Voting will take place in one half of a community space at the school, while the other half will be utilized for physical education class and lunch, Mansfield Public Schools Superintendent Kelly Lyman said.
Some parents in town don’t agree with the setup, as they took to the “Mansfield Connecticut Connection” Facebook group to voice their concerns over the security of their children.
“We spend thousands on school security, door locks, but on Election Day it’s ok to leave the doors wide open and anyone can just walk in,” Eric Moyher said in the post. “It is like the town says security is taken serious unless the town needs the building then you just have to put up with it.”
Moyher called the Board of Education with his concerns.
“They said the town has to have voting at Vinton and the outbuilding is [too] small they said they faced a huge fine from the state unless they held it in the lunch room/gym,” Moyher said.
Moyher is even keeping his daughter, who attends Vinton, home from school on Election Day, he said.
“It’s an issue of numbers, it’s just too many unknowns walking in and around school property,” Moyher said.
This is the first time in the past few years that voting has been open while school is in session. Regardless, the school district is committed to student safety, Lyman said.
“There’s no entrance from the polling location to the school, so there is no way for voters to gain access from the polling location into the building itself,” Lyman said. “The entrance and exits are from the parking lot only and there will be a police officer stationed there [all] day.”
Moyher said he is concerned even with the extra precautions.
“My concern is even though the doors are locked, you are letting a whole lot of unscreened people directly into the school with only a room/gym divider keeping them separate,” Moyher said.
Luke Hajdasz is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.