Town Heals and Remembers

Grand Prairie Police Increase Patrols at Schools

Patrol officers check in at every school in city

By Christine Lee
|  Monday, Jan 7, 2013  |  Updated 6:51 PM CDT
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Police in Grand Prairie will be at every school every day in an effort to keep students safe, it's a plan implemented after the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary last month.

Christine Lee, NBC 5 Grand Prairie Reporter

Police in Grand Prairie will be at every school every day in an effort to keep students safe, it's a plan implemented after the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary last month.

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Grand Prairie police officers now regularly check in with the schools in their beat in the wake of last month's Connecticut school shooting.

Since the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., Grand Prairie police worked with the three districts with schools in the city to enhance their current security procedures.

School Resource Officer Brandon Poor said the additional assistance is helpful.

"The initiatives that we've taken on are to enhance the security measures that we had in place already to make sure that nothing like Connecticut happens in Grand Prairie," he said.

Assistant Chief Don Trask said each school district's security representative met with the police department to talk about possible recommendations, such as increasing the number of video cameras, making sure the cameras are monitored, increasing the number of hand-held radios and looking at each school's entry points.

So far, the Grand Prairie Independent School District has received positive feedback from parents.

"There is a certain level of confidence and comfort that comes with those officers, these trained peace officers, being in and around our campuses at various times during the day," district spokesman Sam Buchmeyer said.

More interaction with Grand Prairie police is also positively affecting students.

"Since this has happened, we've had more students -- especially in eighth grade -- wanting to join the law academy at Grand Prairie High School and have looked into careers in law enforcement," said Jennifer Oliver, Young Women's Leadership Academy principal.

The police department plans to keep the added police presence through the school year and continue it when school starts again in the fall.

There are 47 schools throughout Grand Prairie.

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