Little Elm ISD will be the first district in Texas to give students a chance to report crimes or threatening behavior in school anonymously.
Project Speak Up is a program that provides students with a number, which will be posted all over schools, and allows users to anonymously text information about threatening behavior.
“Anonymity is a big issue," said Little Elm Superintendent Steve Murray. "(It's) key to them being willing to share information with us.”
Little Elm police investigators said they learned how crucial it is to get students to open up last January when Ryan Cook was murdered. A juvenile was arrested in connection with the crime.
Police said they were certain that many teenagers were aware of what happened prior to the arrest, but were reluctant to come forward fearing retaliation, or possibly just not wanting to speak to adults.
Little Elm student Zach Crozier said no one wants to be labeled a snitch.
“It's just the typical stereotype that if I tell them they're going to take me in for questioning,” he said.
Police said they hope Project Speak Up allows students to speak out and possibly save a life without ever actually having to say a word.
The program will begin in September.