It goes without saying that we are all saddened by the recent school shooting in Santa Fe, Texas. While we unequivocally offer our thoughts and prayers, we must also take this and the other recent violent events at our public schools as a call to action.
There is no higher priority for the Lovejoy Independent School District than ensuring the safety and security of your children each and every day. This focus is equally important to our Board of Trustees, our administrators, our teachers, and every employee of this district.
Safety did not just become a priority for us over the last six months. We have been researching additional safety measures for this entire school year. A key component of safety and security is the identification and intervention of those students who are exhibiting behaviors of concern, which might indicate he/she could pose a threat to self or others.
There is also a component related to prevention among all kids, which is focused on building into the system opportunities to increase the protective factors that become a part of the culture our kids experience each day. I would say our program is more developed in the prevention areas than we are in those strategies which would minimize any potential danger that might present itself on our campuses.
The leadership team I meet with weekly has been reviewing additional options throughout the 2017-2018 school year. Two months ago, we convened a safety/security advisory group comprised of parents from each campus, as well as principals, and central office administrators. This group consists of parents who have or had experience in a law enforcement capacity. To date, we are considering at least 18 unique investments to increase the safety and security at each campus. We have met with the Fairview Chief of Police regarding a long-term partnership, which could place a School Resource Officer on each campus, and this week, we will post a new position for a Director of Security which will focus full-time on safety and security within Lovejoy ISD.
One of the things I anticipate for the 2018-2019 school year is having an officer or trained security professional on each of our six campuses every day. We have requested to have an officer on each of our six campuses for these last few days of school, and we do have a Fairview police officer on each campus today. There have been no credible threats causing me to request an officer for these last few days, but in an abundance of caution, it made sense to go ahead and add that layer of protection.
We plan to present a safety/security report at the June Board of Trustees meeting which will include our recommendations for the 2018-2019 school year and beyond. You are welcome to attend that meeting which will occur on June 20th at 7:30 PM in the Lovejoy ISD Administration Building Board Room.
As always, we welcome your questions, suggestions, and concerns on this topic as well as any other related to the school experience of your child or of your experience as a taxpayer in the Lovejoy ISD. I can always be reached by email, or by cell at 972.415.8129.