Highlands board to vote on contract for unarmed security

Brian C. Rittmeyer, The Valley News-Dispatch, Tarentum, Pa.
·2 min read

Apr. 17—Highlands School Board will vote Monday on hiring a new firm to provide unarmed security services for the district.

The board will be voting on a three-year agreement with Universal Protection Service, doing business as Allied Universal Security Services, of Conshohocken, Montgomery County.

The agreement began March 5 or 25; both dates were used in the service agreement. District officials did not respond when asked to clarify which date was correct.

District officials also did not respond when asked how the district could have entered into the contract beginning before a school board vote to approve it.

The district previously had guards through Champion National Security. The school board approved a two-year agreement with the Texas firm in March 2019.

District officials did not respond when asked if Champion had provided services for the full length of the agreement, or when a change was made.

The district hired Champion after quickly rescinding an agreement with Olympia Security Group after residents alerted district officials to posts referencing guns and violence on Olympia's corporate Facebook page.

According to the agreement with Allied Universal, two security guards will be assigned to Highlands High School, two at the middle school and one at the elementary school when school is in session. The company also will provide services at extracurricular activities.

Regular hourly billing rates per guard in the first year are $19.38, and $29.07 for holidays and overtime.

The rates increase by 3% in the second and third year, to $19.97 in the second year with $29.95 for holidays and overtime, and to $20.57 in the third year with $30.86 for holidays and overtime, the agreement states.

A normal work week is 40 hours. The normal work day is Monday through Friday when school is in session, but the agreement states there will be occasions when security guards may be needed at different times and in the evening.

The district will pay the regular hourly rate for Allied Universal employees to appear in court for matters related to their duties in the district.

The district will pay Allied Universal a one-time reimbursement of $800 for each guard who successfully takes and completes the National Association of School Resource Officers training course.

Brian C. Rittmeyer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Brian at 724-226-4701, brittmeyer@triblive.com or via Twitter .