School safety is a big concern as kids head back to class, but now schools are getting some help with security from the state.
During the upcoming school year, students may see more Texas Department of Public Safety Troopers at their school. It’s a state-wide effort aimed to provide more security for school campuses.
In the wake of recent mass school shootings, Governor Greg Abbott implemented a plan for DPS Troopers to have a presence on public school campuses. With that presence, troops can build stronger relationships with students and staff, but also become familiar with the layout of the school.
Sergeant Nathan Brandley, a DPS Trooper, says it’s a proactive measure, especially in the case of an emergency.
“God forbid something does happen with an active shooter event, now we have a better understand and idea of what the school looks like on the inside,” Sergeant Brandley said. “And we know where to go and look. You’re not going in there blind.”
With safety a top priority, teachers at CCISD’s Garcia Elementary School say it takes everyone to ensure safety for their students.
“We depend on the community to help us with this because they’re our eyes when we’re busy inside teaching our students,” said Gloria Alvarez, a second grade teacher at Garcia Elementary School.
Meanwhile, Kimberley Wilburn, a fifth grade teacher who is also a parent, say a larger law enforcement on campus is a comforting feeling.
“It’s a sense of relief knowing that everyone’s working together to make things as safe as possible for everybody,” Wilburn said.
Because schools now have an open-door policy for DPS Troopers, Troopers can stop by a school at any given time.
In the meantime, DPS Troopers are required to fill out paperwork with each school to expedite the response time in the event of an emergency. That information includes contact info, physical location, and others.