LUBBOCK, Texas — On Thursday afternoon, Lubbock Independent School District held a joint press conference with the Lubbock ISD Police Department, Lubbock Police Department, and the Lubbock District Attorney’s Office to announce increasing collaboration between the agencies.
Superintendent Dr. Kathy Rollo announced the cooperation following three weapons brought to Smylie Wilson Middle School, and a gun brought to Coronado High School within two months.
“Some recent incidents have caused concerns in our community about the safety of our students in our schools,” Rollo said. “It’s just expanding those partnerships, continuing to work together and then meeting more regularly to talk through issues and things we can do proactively to avoid issues.”
Lubbock Police Chief Floyd Mitchell said getting a handle on crime within the city and the schools requires teamwork.
“Criminal Activity that occurs throughout Lubbock also affects us in our schools,” Mitchell said.
District Attorney Sunshine Stanek added there would be severe consequences for offenders, and would try juveniles as adults when legally possible.
“Criminal activity that occurs throughout Lubbock also affects us in our schools,” Stanek said.
The school district also emphasized their use of a threat assessment process and the success of a clear bag policy implemented at Smylie Wilson.
Jody Scifres, Chief of Lubbock ISD Police, said he encourages people to speak up when they see something.
“We try to get them services and try to be on the prevantitive side,” Scifres said.
Rollo said they are still looking for feedback before making any new changes to safety and security measures within the schools. She said the district has been speaking with parents and teachers about arming staff, and said many of the surveys concluded with mixed feedback.
Rollo said she wants to ensure parents of their children’s safety while attending school.
“If children do not feel safe at school, it’s hard to focus on learning,” Rollo said.
The next safety and security meeting will be held Feb. 4 at Coronado High School.