Idalou ISD has eye towards future with school security

Idalou ISD has eye towards future with school security

IDALOU, Texas -

"Parents bring their kids to school wanting the feeling that their kids are safe and that they're going to stay safe," Idalou ISD Police Chief Thomas Esparza said.

Just northeast of Lubbock, Idalou is a small town that prides itself on the safety of its school district. 

Chief Esparza said this also means they cannot have the small town mentality of "it won't happen to us."

"That's not the attitude to have when you're talking about children. We have nearly a thousand students in our school district. We're small, but that's still a thousand kids that I'm responsible for," Esparza said.

This is why, despite only having one patrol car, the district has about 140 cameras to cover each area of the campus, leaving no blind spots for security. 

"From my office here, I am able to access any of the cameras. I can go back and view previous video. It makes my job so much easier because I can be in this office, and I can see every one of my campuses and all of my critical and high volume areas," Esparza said. 

Taking every precaution, Esparza said the district has switched to digital key locks, as well as a safety communication channel for all staff through an app. 

In emergencies like an active shooter situation, Esparza said he has the capability to lock down every door on campus with the touch of a button.

"That is something that makes my administrators feel very comfortable in an emergency situation because we can lock all of the campuses down that fast," Esparza said.

Gov. Abbott signed Senate Bill 11 into law last week.

It is designed to give school districts like Idalou ISD more security tools, and Esparza said this legislation emphasizes every school district's first priority: Safety.

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