POSTED: Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 4:28pm
UPDATED: Friday, August 23, 2013 - 6:59am
MISSION, TX (KVEO NEWS CENTER 23) — After yet another school gun scare, parents are wondering just how secure is their child's school. One Valley school district is sparing no expense in terms of improving the quality of security in their schools.
On Tuesday, an elementary school in Georgia was at the mercy of a gunman on campus. Thanks to the brave efforts of the school's bookkeeper, Antoinette Tuff, tragedy was prevented and no one was harmed. According to Craig Verley, Director of Public Relations for Mission CISD, it is events like these that make schools reassess their readiness for a similar situation.
"In terms of specifics, that's a real hard skill to teach," said Verley. "But we do go over with the staff in terms of emergency response scenarios. If the need arises for those types of situations, there's less panic involved in those situations because they know 'okay, this is what we do when faced with this situation.'"
This year, the school district put together a budget of $1.7 million as part of a huge upgrade in security. About $800,000 is going toward installing a new state-of-the-art security camera system.
"This is going to impact each and every school, every building including like our central kitchen, maintenance, central office," Verley described. "It's all going to be tied into the same system with a lot more cameras and a lot better coverage inside and out."
Some of the new internet protocol cameras, or IP cameras, being installed in Mission CISD schools will run on an online system so that principals or front office workers can access the cameras and see what's going on in some of the main hallways.
"We're implementing a new command center where all those cameras will be able to be viewed at any given time from that command center in addition to what ever is going on at the campus level as well."
The command center is still being constructed, and for security reasons the location is not being revealed. School district officials hope that the security improvements will have parents feel at ease with the beginning of school next Monday.