LRSD reassures parents in wake of Sandy Hook shooting

- LITTLE ROCK, AR - The Little Rock School District sent an email to parents Sunday reassuring them that the district has safety and security measures in place for all schools.

Superintendent Dr. Morris Holmes also sent a message to school principals and vice principals urging them to "take extra safety precautions immediately and through next week."

The principals were told to follow "all established safety/security procedures" and "ensure that all exterior doors are locked and that you keep your eyes and ears open for anything out of the ordinary."

This is the email sent to district parents:

Hello LRSD Parents:

I am sending this to you on behalf our superintendent, Dr. Morris Holmes.

Monday, all parents will have concerns about the safety of their children and about safety and security measures and practices that are in place and are carried out daily.

Friday afternoon Superintendent Morris Holmes wrote to all Little Rock School District principals reinforcing security expectations related to security of all outside entrance doors and heightened alertness at front entrance doors, where visitors and the public come; all workers having appropriate identification; close supervision of bathrooms; and clear enforcement of each school’s monitoring and visibility plans with adults assigned to stations throughout the building.

The superintendent has directed the schools’ associate superintendents to specifically communicate the following to all principals: meet with all security and administrative staff prior to school opening on Monday, December 17th, in order to review district written emergency plans concerned with armed intruders and related procedures and responsibilities of all adults in the school; continually monitor all entrance to school doors, monitor bathrooms carefully; ensure that workers in and around campuses are not allowed to use school bathrooms – and must have badges or apparel that offer identification; and review the Emergency Crisis Management Manual. In fact, the principal and staff are advised to remain alert, making sure all safety measures are fully operational.

For your information, parents:

- The Little Rock Police Department has some seventeen police officers stationed throughout our schools, the department monitors and is very aware of our security plan.

- The Little Rock Police department has copies of all school’s emergency plans that include aerial photographs and diagraming. Officers assist the District with reviewing and updating all information inside emergency response plans as well as training dealing with armed intruders and an active shooter.

- The District has more than 120 security officers plus over twenty substitutes.

- The District has 1,700 cameras installed throughout schools, with every school having monitoring devices based on the size of the school.

-School counselors are on alert, to assist classroom teachers and staff with questions that may be raised by younger children and teenagers.

-Parents may call or email the principal, counselor, or teacher related to behavior/responses concerned with some of the effects of violence and loss of life.

-Parents, we respect your discretion about how to best address your children; however, the district will also retain the highest professional persons who know most about appropriately engaging younger children and teenagers.

Be assured that beginning Monday, the District will be fully engaged with administrators and staff doing all in our power to keep school safe for children, teachers, staff and parents. And we will go on a renewed learning curve accessing the known measures, technology and communication techniques available.

We ask for your alertness, your concerns and the support that we know you will provide. We care about and love your children and our teachers and principals.

Pamela Smith, LRSD Communications Director

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