Posted: Jan 31, 2013 4:50 PM by Ben Lloyd - firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated: Jan 31, 2013 5:42 PM
SINTON - Tonight, Sinton ISD Superintendent Steve Vanmatre will meet with parents for a listening session on increased security measures already in place or in the works.
The school board recently made the decision to hire a private security firm to provide armed guards. Their patrols started last week. Along with the guards, the district changed the process of loading and unloading students on buses and added an intercom system for anyone planning on entering the buildings.
The district also plans on adding fingerprint scanners to keep track of all students who use the district's buses.
As we reported earlier this week, the armed guards on campus may violate Texas Education Code. The code says that if security guards on campus are going to carry firearms, they have to be commissioned peace officers, such as police officers, constables, deputies, etc.
The men patrolling the Sinton campuses are employees of a private firm, Eddie Garza Security.
Deputy Superintendent George Hernandez says the school board approved the guards, but that the board and the district may have been unaware of the T.E.A regulations when the decision was made. "That discussion didn't come up at the board meeting," Hernandez told us.
The school district's attorney says the issue is a matter of interpretation. The T.E.A code mentions security personnel. He says the district didn't hire personnel, it contracted with a private company that has personnel.
He says that means the rule doesn't apply to them.
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