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Gadsden school officials, law enforcement discuss school safety with community

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Noah Raess
/
Gadsden Independent School District officials and law enforcement discuss school safety

School safety is often a community effort. At Gadsden Independent School District officials say the school staff, police, and parents have all stepped up to keep their schools safe. As new programs to help stop bullying and increase school security get introduced many are hopeful this could increase the chances of students staying safe so they can focus on finding success in the classroom.

School shootings, bullying, and drug abuse, many parents may have parents worried about their children's safety in school. In response to these concerns, the Gadsden Independent School District along with Save The Children held a meeting to hear the parent’s concerns.

Gadsden Superintendent Travis Dempsey says he wants parents to know that him and his staff are doing what they can to protect students.

“One of the biggest things we are emphasizing is keeping doors locked. I think the more you learn about Uvalde and one of the things we want to learn is making sure all doors are secured. We want to keep our staff aware. Watching, looking around at what is going on around us,” Dempsey said.

Keeping Kids Safe in the Gadsden School District

In addition to these safety precautions, Gadsden Independent School District is also rolling out a new program where parents can volunteer to patrol campuses and keep an eye out for anything that may be of concern. Officials say they hope this effort paired with adding more This paired with Student Resource Officers will add an extra layer of protection to the schools.

“We are partnering with law enforcement agencies to add SRO’s. Our goal is to establish SRO’s at each of our high schools and then try to grow that to covering all of our schools at some point,” Dempsey said.

Law enforcement is a vital factor in protecting schools. Doña Ana County Sheriff Kim Stewart says that this partnership is important although stopping shootings will be a difficult task.

“We in America have a love of guns that far outweighs any other civilized country in the world. I think we are to the point know that we are going to have to come up with some new and creative ideas to capture lone wolf perpetrators earlier in their lives,” Stewart said.

Issues such as bullying may also be very damaging to a child's mental health. Dempsey says he hopes to fix this with different trainings and programs that will help staff identify bullying faster.

“So Olaves is a research- based program we have introduced in our elementary schools and then our secondaries we have had our staff trained in capturing kids’ hearts. The idea there is to really emphasize our adults making good healthy connections to kids so if they need someone to talk to that opportunity is there,” Dempsey said.

School safety is often a community effort. At Gadsden Independent School District officials say that t, the school staff, police, and parents have all stepped up to keep their schools safe. As new programs to help stop bullying and increase school security get introduced many are hopeful this could increase the chances of students staying safe so they can focus on finding success in the classroom.