Highland Park ISD will soon have four additional officers to help secure campuses thanks to a partnership between the district, the town of Highland Park, and the city of University Park.
Highland Park Mayor Margo Goodwin said the town would provide about $200,000 to the district to hire two district police officers to help secure Armstrong and Bradfield Elementary schools, particularly during arrival and dismissal. The town will also provide two patrol vehicles for district officers’ use.
“The relationship between the city and the town and the district has never been stronger, and I’m so proud to be able to say that.” -Kelly Walker
The city of University Park, for its part, will hire two officers who will be assigned to Hyer and University Park Elementary Schools during arrival and dismissal.
“The relationship between the city and the town and the district has never been stronger, and I’m so proud to be able to say that,” HPISD Board of Trustees vice president Kelly Walker said.
University Park Mayor Olin Lane Jr. said the city already provides a school resource officer for the middle school and the high school. “It’s been an ongoing and cooperative effort,” Lane said. “(The goal is) for every school to be covered with a (police) presence.”
University Park Police Chief Greg Spradlin also praised the collaboration between the city, town, and district and said they hope to have the new officers trained and ready in early 2020.
Spradlin said there would then be a selection process to determine which officers will serve as the school resource officers.
“The collaboration between the city and the town has been remarkable,” he said. “We talk to one another on a daily basis.”
HPISD Superintendent Dr. Tom Trigg said the new officers would improve security for the district.
“We are grateful to have the opportunity to partner with the town and the city where it concerns the safety of our schools,” Trigg said in a statement. “The four additional officers will further ensure a secure environment for our students and staff members every day.”