Comal ISD Students in Good Hands as District Celebrates America’s Safe Schools Week
Comal ISD student Shantè Williams gives Comal County Sheriff’s Deputy Homer Balderas and Daren a hug during a D.A.R.E. graduation ceremony.
Comal ISD has always taken pride in the fact it keeps its students in a safe environment on a daily basis.
According to David Springer, Maintenance and Operations Director, the district’s schools are safer than ever.
“It all starts with our outstanding relationships with our local law enforcement agencies,” Springer said. “The Comal County Sheriff’s Office, and the New Braunfels, Bulverde and Garden Ridge Police Departments, as well as our local Fire Marshalls are constantly working with us to improve the safety in our schools.”
Springer said in case of an emergency, all of the law enforcement agencies have keys and floor plans to each of Comal ISD’s campuses.
In addition, high-definition cameras are placed at various locations at each of the district’s nearly 30 campuses. In all, Comal ISD has almost 1,000 cameras and that number is growing each school year.
“We are in great shape when it comes to school safety,” Springer said. “The students know the cameras are there and they will get caught if they’re thinking about doing anything they’re not supposed to. We can sit anywhere in the district and see what’s going on at our schools day or night. These high-resolution cameras pick up everything.”
Another great asset for the district has been the Comal County Sheriff’s Department’s K9 Unit, which make random sweeps of all middle and high school campus buildings and parking lots on a regular basis.
Canyon, Smithson Valley and Canyon Lake high schools all have at least one School Resource Officer, which are full-time Sheriff’s Deputies, on campus at all times during the school day and at extra-curricular activities after school.
“I’ve had multiple students come up to me and tell me there are no more drugs at our schools,” Springer said. “They know there’s no where they can hide them. The K9 Units have been an amazing help and we can’t thank the Sheriff’s Office enough.”
Springer added the majority of Comal ISD campuses now have traffic control officers helping keep the student unloading and loading zones safe in both the morning and afternoon.
Comal ISD’s D.A.R.E. program continues to be a favorite among the district’s fifth-grade students. The D.A.R.E. program stresses the importance of making healthy decisions and choosing friends wisely, and the dangers of tobacco, drugs, alcohol, bullying and peer pressure. It is a 12-week program, which has been taught to Comal ISD fifth-grade students each year since the 1980s.
“We start introducing our students to our local police officers when they are in kindergarten,” Springer said. “That way, they grow up knowing the officers are their friends and are there to help them in any way they can.”