Thursday night, Lubbock-Cooper ISD nearly doubled their police force. Last month, the school board voted to post an officer at each of their seven campuses. Therefore, four more officers were introduced and sworn in at the board meeting.
"At the last board meeting, our school superintendent, as well as our school board, decided to increase our police force so that each campus would be provided with an armed, certified officer," Lubbock-Cooper Police Chief, Rick Saldana said.
Before the addition, Lubbock-Cooper had six officers on staff. However, that included Saldana and a night officer. Therefore, over winter break, resume's were reviewed and four more officers were hired.
"These are individuals that have the experience that in the event of an actual threat they can respond to the incident swiftly and get things back in order," Saldana said.
Each of these officers have at least five years of law enforcement experience under their belts and some even have military backgrounds.
"They all have active shooter training and they all have training with dealing with the public and doing so effectively," Saldana said.
Funding for the new hires came out of a school board approved, budget amendment, a cost Lubbock-Cooper decided was necessary to protect their students.
"We want our parents to know we're trying to produce an environment that's conducive to learning. We want our teachers to feel safe teaching and our students to feel safe learning," Saldana said.
Each of the seven campuses will be assigned a permanent officer, bringing the force to 10. A truancy officer is also stationed at one campus and a K9 unit is available when needed.
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