School Safety

by Christa Lollis

The images from Virginia Tech and Columbine are still very vivid in most people's minds. What if those events happened in East Texas? Attorney General Greg Abbott asked Lufkin students, "While you're in the restroom you hear gunshots in the hallway.  What do you do."

The answer to that, Abbott feels is in his plan for Texas students. It emphasizes the 3 P's, preparation, prevention and practice. "We're here to talk about situations that we want to prevent. One of the most scary images in our society is the image of a gunman stalking the hallways of a school," Abbott told the group at Lufkin High School. But he feels that adding more emergency plans, campus crime stoppers and opening the lines of communications with students can prevent disaster.

Lufkin has already started implementing many of the new tactics but they'll soon be tested by an outside agency. "As local folks we tend to take our safety for granted but those third set of eyes will help us review those practices that we have in place that we think are pretty good right now," Lufkin ISD Superintendent, Roy Knight said.  Abbot hopes to have his new school safety program up and running throughout the state within the next few months because he wants every school in Texas to be a safe one. "This is a place where children should come to learn not a place where kids should be in fear. The way to achieve that is to create a safe environment for kids to come and learn," Abbott explained.

The new plan will make sure East Texas students are ready in case the unthinkable happens.