Texas lawmakers to discuss school safety at Monday meeting in Ca - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Texas lawmakers to discuss school safety at Monday meeting in Capitol

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Senator Craig Estes says Monday's hearing on school safety is meant to gather information and ideas from experts as well as the public after the horrific events at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown Connecticut.

And more recently, a college campus shooting a little closer to home in Houston.

Estes says the tricky part is...every school district has different needs.

"It's not a one size fits all. At the end of the day we want our children and our teachers to be safe and secure. How we go about that, it's the whole reason we're gonna have this committee meeting," Estes said.

We asked Estes about Harrold ISD, that used to be in his district. They made national headlines several years ago for actually allowing teachers to carry concealed weapons...but it's because law enforcement is so far away from the rural town.

"You can imagine the thought process they had to go through realizing that law enforcement is 30 minutes away from this little school and it's right on a major highway," Estes said.

Estes says after they hear testimony from experts in education and security, they'll open the floor up to public testimony.

We asked some local parents what they are hoping for.

Judy Anglin has a 7th grade son at Bedichek Middle School in South Austin. When she has to pick him up early, it makes her uneasy how simple it is.

"They don't even check my ID to see if I'm actually his mom at all. They just say 'Well who are you here to pickup?' and I just tell them and they say 'We'll go get him.,'" Anglin said.

She says she knows of some other schools that require parents to identify themselves through an outdoor intercom system and then show photo ID in the office, which she likes.

But as far as teachers packing heat at school, Anglin is not a fan.

"It's a little scary, you know. I know they mean well but I'm not too sure if I want my child around a gun in the classroom because a child could get it," she said.

Lori Mireles doesn't like that idea either...she thinks lawmakers should stop trying to push their own agendas and really focus on the issue.

"I think they really need to think this out and they need to think about it clearly and they need to really think about all the consequences and all the scenarios," she said.

And with all of the soldiers coming home from over seas searching for jobs, she feels they would be the perfect candidates to stand guard at every entrance to protect her children.

"We go to banks and you've got security guards there and they're protecting our money. How about protecting our kids?"

Tomorrow's meeting will be at 2:00 in the Senate Chamber of the Capitol.

 

We're told some of the topics of discussion include state-funded training for teachers who hold a concealed handgun license, guidelines for the development of emergency operations plans and of course a chance for the public to give their thoughts.

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