With the start of a new school year just days away, it’s a great time to discuss school safety.
As observed every new school year, many become overwhelmed or stressed from trying to get everything ready for the first day/week of school. It’s best to plan your daily start early and be mindful of our kiddos and their safety while on your daily commute.
Consider the following safety tips and know what to expect from law enforcement. Safety is our number one priority!
Your Child's Daily Commute
Teach your children the basic rules of the road, those rules that apply to walkers. For example: NEVER cross the street against a red light, wait for the green light. Walkers should stay visible, wear reflective clothing/backpacks, or wear bright colors so motorists can see them. Plan a safe, direct route to and from school or the bus stop, and parents stay aware of your child’s route. If able, children should walk in groups.
Lastly, teach your children to avoid suspicious locations or people and to report those instances to a person of trust (teacher, police officer, or other trusted adult). A good way to know and avoid some of these places is by visiting our Sex Offender Page or by viewing the dots on Life360.
Cyclists must obey the rules of the road. This means cyclists must stop for red lights and stop signs, etc. Also, bicycles must be equipped with front and rear reflectors. A red taillight and clear front headlight must be used when riding after dark. Again, it’s a good idea to wear reflective material or brightly colored clothing to help with visibility.
Message for Motorists
Be prepared for heavy traffic and long delays the first couple of weeks. It’s a good idea to plan your day a bit earlier so you do not have to rush. While on your commute, be mindful of children on bikes and on foot, because they may have an occasional tendency to dart out into the roadway.
HANG UP AND DRIVE! – Using your cell phone for calls or texting is prohibited citywide, not just in a school zone. You will receive a citation, so hang up and drive.
What to Expect from APPD
Law Enforcement Activities
We’ll be patrolling our school zones before, during, and immediately after school. We’re looking for speeding motorists, along with distracted and aggressive drivers. During the first several weeks, patrol officers will strictly enforce all violations observed within the school zones. This means if you are contacted for one of the following violations, you will most likely receive a ticket.
- Passing a stopped, loading/unloading school bus,
- Illegal Parking violations, including double parking,
- Speeding in School Zone,
- Use of Cell Phone, and
- Unrestrained Child Passengers.
Officers on patrol will be in marked and unmarked police vehicles. Fair warning: We are watching and working to provide for another safe and prosperous school year.
Working together, we can ensure the safest, most favorable atmosphere for our children to live, learn, and play this school year.
This past year, through the summer, and continuing into this school year, we are working closely with APISD to provide for the safest environment for our students and ISD staff. APISD has adopted the Standard Response Protocol created by the I Love you Guys Foundation. Parents, staff, and students will continue to learn more about this protocol as the year evolves. Find more info on the program below.
Additionally, the PD and ISD will triage all See Something, Say Something reports to staff or the PD. Our best effort is to ensure we are doing all we can to maintain a healthy mental wellness of all students and staff.
Stay informed, stay protected!
Be a Hero, not a Bully
Instead of bringing others down, lift them up. How you treat others in person and online defines who you truly are. Your actions today will impact your future tomorrow.
Resources for Parents
Standard Reponse Protocol – A critical ingredient in the safe school recipe is the uniform classroom response to any incident. Weather events, fires, accidents, intruders and other threats to student safety are scenarios that are planned and trained for by school and district administration and staff. Historically, schools have taken this scenario-based approach to respond to hazards and threats. It’s not uncommon to find a stapled sheaf of papers or even a tabbed binder in a teacher’s desk that describes a variety of things that might happen and the specific response to each event.
Life360 – We’ve partnered with Life360 to bring you & your family added security. Keep an eye on your loved ones while providing them a way to alert you when something is wrong. Additionally, we supply Life360 with crime data through SpotCrime.com so you know what’s going on around you and your loved ones. Also, set up alerts and know that your child has made it safely to school or safely back home.
NCMEC – The National Center of Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) provides a wealth of resourceful information. Did you know – most abductions occur between 2pm and 7pm; or that 51% of children avoided being abducted by simply running away? Learn more at NCMEC online and arm your child with knowledge.