LISD updates school safety policies

A student holds a hall pass while waiting outside a classroom.

Bree Andrews

A student holds a hall pass while waiting outside a classroom.

LISD has updated its safety policies for the 2022-23 school year. These new policies were put into place to combat ongoing issues such as vandalism, students roaming the hallways and the rise in school shootings across the U.S. 

“The biggest changes would be the locking of the classroom doors,” assistant principal Glen Croll said. “Before, we could keep them open with a magnet and have unlimited entry and exit from the classrooms.”. 

Administrators are now required to complete daily exterior door checks to make sure they are locked and not being propped open. These rules were put into place to prevent intruders from entering the school and having access to classrooms.

“Several other districts around us have had the same kind of plan in effect for the past several years,” Croll said. “[Our] district finally decided it’s time to be more secure and make schools as safe as possible.” 

In addition to locked doors, students now have more restrictions on when they can use the bathrooms. Unless it is an emergency, students are not allowed to use the restroom during the first and last 15 minutes of class or during the 35-minute advisory period, which is dedicated to state-mandated lessons, club meetings and tutorials. . 

 “I think it’s very unreasonable and it violates our rights in a way,” student council president Melody Abrahimi said. “I shouldn’t have to ask an adult when I can use the bathroom. Especially [for] girls [on their periods] – if you have a situation, you need to take care of it.”

In addition to door locking and bathroom rules, teachers are now required to participate in daily hallway duty. This is a 30-minute period when a teacher is stationed in the halls and required to watch the students who are passing through. 

“Basically I’m supposed to [check] if a kid is tardy and redirect them to get a tardy,” AP English teacher Nicole Perkins said. “If they don’t have an ID or if they’re just swinging it around, [I ask the student to] go get an ID or put [their] ID on. If it’s the beginning of class, you’re not supposed to be out in the hallway yet, [so I] just make sure that everything is running smoothly.” 

Croll said the main goal of these new safety policies is to ensure that the school day is as uninterrupted as possible, and that students and staff come to school feeling safe and protected. 

“I think the events that have happened this past spring at Uvalde are a big factor because it hits close to home,” Croll said. “I think overall, [with] the national attention that’s happening with mass shootings, we just want to make sure that students are 100% safe.”