Safety focus in wake of bombings
By Miles Smith
As authorities in Austin and San Antonio investigate serial bombings in Austin and Schertz involving exploding packages that killed two people and injured several more, Lockhart ISD Safety Task Force members met as classes reconvened from spring break to talk about keeping campuses and students safe, Superintendent Susan Bohn said.
A total of five explosions and six bombs have been reported in the serial bombing case.
According to the Austin American-Statesman, Mark Anthony Conditt, 23, of Pflugerville, a man authorities were attempting to arrest in the bombings early Wednesday killed himself off I-35 in Round Rock by detonating an explosive device as law enforcement closed in.
According to letters sent to parents, guardians and staff members, the district is ensuring campus administrators review emergency operating procedures, including new, tightened procedures related to the handling of packages by campuses and district offices.
Campus administrators will also speak to students about safety tips, emphasizing the message “If you see something, say something,” Bohn said.
“Even as we are excited to get back to work, we are also mindful that the news of recent events in Austin and Schertz may have some of us feeling a little more on edge,” Bohn said in a letter dated March 20.
Bohn said Lockhart police chief Ernesto Pedraza had emphasized during the task force meeting that if anyone in the district, home or community has a safety concern, they should immediately call 911.
“Do not investigate concerns on your own,” Bohn said. “Local law enforcement stand ready to investigate any concern and work to keep the community safe.”
The Caldwell County Office of Emergency management is distributing posters displaying the “If you see something, say something” message, which lists 844-643-2251 as a number to call.
Task force members recommend staff and parents give the following safety tips with their children:
– If you see something, say something. If your children see something that does not look safe or does not seem normal, tell them to tell an adult right away.
– Do not touch or go near something that seems unfamiliar or not normal. Children are naturally curious. Emphasize how important it is not to touch strange items or go near them. Tell an adult instead.
Task force members offered additional tips for staffers:
– If you see something that does not look safe or seem normal, call 911 and tell your administrator.
– Keep an eye out for either LISD badges or visitors badges for anyone in the halls or on school grounds. If you see someone without a badge, let the front office know.
– If a student reports a safety concern to you, take it seriously and report it to an administrator.