TPS increasing security measures at schools

Published: Sep. 1, 2021 at 5:44 AM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Officials at Toledo Public Schools said they are stepping up safety measures after a gun was found in a student’s book bag last week.

Parents want to know what’s in the lesson plan that will make the schools safer. According to school police, the plan includes more random weapon checks and students speaking up.

It’s still unclear why a Bowsher student brought a gun to school. With all the violence on the streets of Toledo, the incident has parents calling on the school district to step up safety.

“They just don’t realize the horrible effects that gun violence has on their lives, and they’re carrying weapons is just devastating,” said a woman who declined to be identified. Her nephew attends a TPS school.

TPS Director of Public Safety Diana Ruiz-Krause said the district plans to do more random weapon checks.

“We check every bag, everybody coming into our schools,” she said. “So we are stepping those up.”

TPS already has layers of safety in place for students and staff. High school students are not allowed to carry book bags during the school day, instead leaving them in their lockers. TPS and Toledo Police officers work in every school as well.

And a new state-of-the-art camera system is in the works.

“Instead of searching from one camera system to the other, it would be much easier to track that student,” Ruiz-Krause said.

TPS also has campus protection officers who are non-sworn personnel that monitor the hallways and schoolyards.

While some parents want to see more campus protection, school leaders are making a plea to parents.

“You’re the parent. I think some parents might be surprised at what they find in their kid’s book bags,” Ruiz-Krause said. “You can also check social media.

“The school should be a safe haven,” she added. “They should understand that they should not be bringing weapons to our schools.”

Meanwhile, parents are voicing growing frustrations about the ongoing violence on the streets of Toledo.

“It’s getting dangerous,” the aunt of a TPS student said. “It’s sad, and our kids need a little more help in guidance.”

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