Lamar CISD planned security changes before Florida shooting

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Lamar CISD planned security changes before Florida shooting (KTRK)

Since the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, a lot of districts have talked openly about their security plans, reassessing their policies and procedures.

TIMELINE: How Florida high school shooting unfolded
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Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel gives a timeline of events in the mass shooting at a school in Parkland, Florida.

Lamar Consolidated ISD, however, is one district that was already making improvements before the shooting ever happened.

At a meeting two weeks ago, Lamar CISD board approved a new position called School Safety Coordinator. It was coincidentally the night before the school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

"Our safety and security issues were being addressed by several different departments," explained district Superintendent Thomas Randle. "And what we wanted to do was to streamline that."

The need for the coordinator is a function of growth. The district is among the state's fastest-growing, and having a single person with a finger on the pulse will complement what the district is already doing.

"Safety and security isn't just a priority because I'm responsible for over 30,000 kids," said Randle, in an interview at Churchill Fulshear Jr. High School. "But I personally have a grandson in the district and I want to make sure he's safe as well."

There are dozens of cameras on every campus, Rosenberg Police assigned as school resource officers, and there is even a plan to purchase mechanisms that barricade doors in emergencies.

"We are constantly listening to our community," Randle added. "Making sure that their kids and our staff are safe."

Lamar CISD is not alone. Other districts have security on their minds. HISD announced plans to establish a new team trained to respond to active threats and emergencies.

Cy-Fair ISD reminded parents of its plans to install secure vestibules at the entrance to campuses.

Governor Greg Abbott announced a statewide school safety assessment is underway.

Superintendent Randle sent home a letter to parents Monday reassuring them of their district's emphasis on safety, something at the top of the agenda even before the shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School focused national attention.

The district plans to hire the new school safety coordinator by the end of this school year.

Related Topics:
educationparkland school shootinggun safetyschoolsafety
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