In light of current events such as the fatal elementary school shooting in Uvalde, schools across the state are reviewing their safety protocols and making changes to better protect campuses.
Tyler ISD is among the districts ensuring that safety protocols are the best possible to protect students and staff.
On Monday evening, the Tyler ISD Board of Directors approved the purchase of safety equipment, additional vehicles and the addition of officers for the Tyler ISD Police Department.
Tyler ISD currently has 21 police officers and with their 2022 to 2023 plan, they will add 13 more. It will take time to fill the positions, but their goal is to fill them with qualified officers as quickly as possible.
Tyler ISD middle and high schools have several police officers and elementary schools are policed, but one is not there permanently. With the district’s new plan, her goal is to have a permanent officer in every elementary school in the district.
“I encourage parents to join us on this deal, we are getting the best law enforcement equipment right now, especially in schools,” said Tyler ISD Police Chief Danny Brown. “I would just say to our parents that we are making it as safe as possible and that we just send your children to school and we will make sure they are safe.”
Brown said they want more officers and the purchase of additional equipment due to what is happening in the state and country. Brown said they’ve looked at the response in other cases and talked to vendors and agencies about equipment that would help them.
“If we [were] to have an incident, we believe this equipment will help us reach our students faster,” Brown said.
Superintendent Marty Crawford said: “As a father myself, the safety and security of all of our children and staff keeps me up at night. In addition to providing the best education for all students, it is a top priority for the district. »
Staff and alternates are trained annually on specific district and campus safety procedures, including active shooter training. Mandatory drills are scheduled before the start of the school year, and each campus has a school behavioral threat assessment team that is trained and has reviewed the procedures for that campus.
“The District is taking significant steps to maintain ongoing, year-round safety measures,” said Jeff Millslagle, director of safety and security at Tyler ISD. “These include the evaluation of access control procedures, including single access points, locked doors to instruction rooms, visitor check-in procedures and exterior access points.”
The district will also launch an app allowing parents to track their students as they board and exit buses. Other security measures, resources, response strategies, equipment and personnel will be implemented within the framework of the appropriate district policy, in accordance with the law.
“Let’s be honest, the work of school safety is never done, and we are committed to continuing our efforts to address the issues that will keep our students and staff safe within our walls so that we can focus on success. students,” Crawford said.
Additional plans for the 2022 to 2023 school year include installing warning systems on all exterior doors in the district. They will also be adding more security cameras, fencing, and film to certain facilities.
The district is also considering the Guardian program. If approved, the program allows the board of directors and superintendent to authorize specific district employees to have access to certain firearms in schools, at board meetings, and at district-sponsored events. school or related to the school on district property, to the extent permitted by law.
If the Guardian program is approved, certain district employees authorized to have access to a firearm on district property will have many hours of specialized training in crisis intervention, hostage situation handling and other subjects that the council may deem necessary before they are ever allowed to be a part of the program.