• Parent: Intruder went unnoticed at local charter school

    By: Crystal Haynes

    Updated:

    BOSTON - Parents at a Dorchester charter school are calling for action after an intruder entered the school and went unnoticed.

    A mom and active school volunteer tells Boston 25 News the female intruder entered UP Academy Tuesday and made it all the way to the second floor before she caused a scene and was arrested.

    "As I'm coming by, I saw a Boston Police cruiser and an ambulance out in front of the school," said UP Academy parent council member Shanell Caldwell. 

    The woman reportedly tailed a group headed to a parenting class. 

    "There was somebody, an intruder, destroying property," said Caldwell.

    The UP Education Network told Boston 25 News:

    "Because of the alertness of our staff, that person was immediately escorted out of the building and the Boston Police Department was called."

    Caldwell's child, a second grader, saw it all.

    "Every visitor, we've been told has to have a visitor pass. These issues should not go on. These issues should not be occurring," said Caldwell.

    The UP Network says it is "reinforcing our visitor check-in system due to the incident that occurred yesterday."

    Caldwell says that's not enough. 

    "We're not being proactive. They're being reactive," said Caldwell.

    She and the parent council want to see school resource officers, the number of cameras increased to include the second floor, and more staffing throughout the school.

    "We as parents and even those who are part of the parent council are willing to come in and volunteer our time here. We’re willing to make these changes to help out," said Caldwell. "Why do children have to witness this occurring before somebody actually does something about it."

    Caldwell says this is not the first time security has been an issue. Under-staffing and unmanned posts are reported to the parents council regularly. The UP Academy also shares its building with community agencies with outside clientele.

    "Our community partners will also now have staff members greeting visitors at the entrance to the building," said the UP Network. 

    UP Education says security and safety remain its top priority. 

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