DISD Police Chief Says Communication Lacking On Security

School board considers $4.5 million in security upgrades

The Dallas school district's chief of police told school board members his department has not been allowed to brief school principals about security issues in six years. 

Chief Craig Miller said his department has not been given time on the agenda at principals' meetings, something he hopes to change.
The revelation came as Miller briefed the board about a $4.5 million proposal to beef up security and one day after an NBC 5 investigation revealed dozens of schools did not conduct security drills and fire drills required by law.
Miller told the NBC 5 Investigates team that a lack of regular communication with principals may have contributed to the problems NBC 5 Investigates uncovered.
District records show 64 schools did not do the number of required fire drills during the 2011-2012 school year. At 32 schools, the district can't tell if all required security drills happened in the fall semester of 2012. One school conducted no security drills. And at about 40 schools, security drill records are missing from last spring.
NBC 5's investigation prompted the district to review its emergency plan. The chief and administration officials have promised to ensure that all schools conduct each required drill.
"We need to continue to monitor that and be vigilant ourselves, but the administrators have to take the responsibility and on these campuses conduct the drills they're supposed to and, at the end of six months or this semester, you'll see we'll get 100 percent compliance," said Miller.
The $4.5 million plan the board is considering would help install card access readers at elementary schools, new security cameras and peepholes in portable classroom buildings so teachers can see who is on the other side of the door.
Miller told the board currently only eight out of 150 elementary schools have buzzers on the doors to regulate who can get in.
The security proposal will go before the board at its regular meeting Feb. 28.  
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