Tulsa Police Helping Ease School Security Concerns
Beginning today parents should notice a more visible police presence. Field officers are going into the schools to visit with administrators, teachers and students letting them know they're there.
Look for more Tulsa police cars across from schools and in parking lots says Tulsa Police Chief Chuck Jordan.
"As far as visible changes, yes, absolutely that's what you'll see is more police officers around schools," says Jordan.
It's the kind of assurances parents want. But are more officers and locked doors the best investment of limited funds?
"The best investment for protecting children is personnel, more teachers who can develop better relationships with children and parents," says Police Chief Gary Ruddick with Tulsa Public Schools.
Relationships that police know lead to tips to its tip line about potential threats.
"Everybody in their community when they hear or see something like this, these problems starting to evolve, behavior that's off center to tell somebody and that's what happened in Bartlesville and they did an outstanding job of preventing just as horrific a tradegy up there," says Jordan
It starts with police building contacts inside each school.
"Making yourself completely accessible to teachers and educators to try and come up with some other solutions, if we see any kind of lapse or anything we can do better, we're going to find a solution for it," says Chief Jordan.
Federal grants and a 2010 bond issue provided millions of dollars for school security including a new dispatch system compatible with the City of Tulsa's. It will maximize resources for emergency's and eliminate duplicate calls.
Security measures will continue to evolve as more officers make their presence known around each school. at the end of 30 days all of this will be evaluated to determine what if any additional changes should be made.
The Tulsa Public Schools Campus Police Department has 23 certified police officers. The department was established five years ago with a federal grant.