FISD Parents and Community,
After the recent school shooting in Florida, I know that you may be concerned about the safety of your children while they are at school. I want to reassure you that safety and security has been and continues to be a priority at FISD. Our staff is my family and your children are our children; we work every day to provide a safe and secure environment for both. This week, the District Leadership Team met and discussed the importance of reminding staff to be vigilant - keeping our eyes and our ears open at all times, checking to ensure doors and entrances are secure, ensuring visitors have passes and reporting anything out of the ordinary. I want to share with you some of the things FISD has in place to make sure your children are safe at our campuses.
To ensure consistent and specific responses to crisis situations, an Emergency Operations Plan, as outlined by the Texas School Safety Center (TSSC), is utilized at FISD. A safety and security audit of all Floresville ISD facilities was completed in 2017, submitted to the TSSC, and presented to the Board as required. FISD met, or exceeded, all standards of this comprehensive audit. We have implemented recommended improvements as we continue to work to provide the safest possible learning and working environment. To protect campuses further, there are additional measures and protocols in place that are unpublished for security reasons. Additionally, we are enhancing a Multi Hazard Training Manual that will help to guide staff through more specific scenarios.
We also have taken thorough measures on campuses to ensure the physical safety and security of staff and students. Every campus conducts monthly drills and evacuations so staff and students know what to do in different types of emergency situations. Each campus uses the Raptor Visitor Management System that requires all visitors to check-in at the campus office and undergo a screening before entering the building. All campuses now have main entrances with secure vestibules. All staff members are required to wear photo ID badges.
By recognizing and encouraging acts of kindness and reminding students and staff of the importance of taking care of each other, we are proactively focusing on creating a caring and respectful environment throughout our district. We encourage you and your children to use our Stay Alert system, to report unkind or concerning behavior via email or phone.
We also know that when we work and communicate with each other, our students and staff will have the safest and most secure environment. That is why we continue to provide opportunities to keep parents informed about important safety topics. Most recently, FMS hosted a parent night with information about the dangers of social media and the importance of parents monitoring their child’s use of it.
In December, FISD once again facilitated the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT) with city, county and state law enforcement at one of our campuses. In addition, an Intruder Assessment was conducted and suggested improvements have been implemented. FISD also has a contractual agreement with both city and county law enforcement to provide support when needed. Both entities also monitor our campuses when school is not in session. Finally, in December we received a grant to add another officer to the FISD Police Department.
Unfortunately, these are anxious times, and our children are seeing and hearing about things that are deeply disturbing to us even as adults. If your child needs help processing their thoughts and feelings, specifically as it relates to trauma and grief, do not hesitate to reach out to their school counselor. Please know that safety is and will continue to be a priority for FISD and that we proactively plan so that we can be best prepared in the event of a crisis. Anyone with concerns or suggestions is encouraged to contact your child’s campus principal or central office staff at 830-393-5300.
Dr. Sherri Bays
FISD Superintendent of Schools