West Rusk, Tx (Longview News-Journal) — The Board of Trustees for West Rusk County Consolidated Independent School District will hold a special meeting Tuesday to discuss creating a school district police department.
Superintendent Tommy Alexander said the possibility of a police department for the district has been under discussion for almost a year and is not being done specifically in response to the December shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. However, he conceded that the tragedy has brought the issue of school security to the forefront.
While several other East Texas school districts have decided to let staff members who have concealed handgun licenses to carry weapons on school property, Alexander said that’s not an option he’s comfortable pursuing.
“I don’t, personally, want to be part of a district that arms its teachers,” Alexander said. “I’ve worked with a lot of outstanding educators over the past 40 years, but there’s not one I could think of that I’d want to see armed during the school day.”
By creating a police department for the district, the schools will have an armed, licensed peace officer on the premises whenever school is in session, he said. The office would also be present at extracurricular activities.
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