Gadsden Independent School District recruits parents for patrol schools – Las Cruces Sun news | Hot Mobile Press

ANTHONY, NM — Amid community pressure to increase visible security staff at its schools, the Gadsden independent school district announced Thursday it will recruit parents to patrol schools.

Superintendent Travis Dempsey calls it the POPS program, or “parents on patrol for schools,” and said the district would cover the cost of background checks for volunteers participating in the program.

Volunteers would not be allowed to carry weapons on school grounds, but would serve as eyes and ears in schools, making sure doors were closed and bolted, and walking around campus to report suspicious activity or direct someone to help if needed.

Dempsey made the announcement at a community meeting in Anthony, where he participated in a panel discussion with Doña Ana County Sheriff Kim Stewart, Sgt. Arturo Guerrero of the Anthony Police Department, School Board President Laura Salazar Flores, and City Council member Gabriel Holguin by Anthony. The event was hosted by the Women’s Intercultural Center and the Save the Children Action Network.

Gadsden Independent School District Superintendent Travis Dempsey made the announcement "POP" Program for parents who volunteer to patrol school sites during a school safety forum at the Women's Intercultural Center in Anthony, NM on Thursday, August 4, 2022.

Following the May mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, New Mexico’s fourth-largest school district is under pressure to deploy school resource officers at all 25 district locations, stretching from the township of San Miguel south of Las Cruces to Sunland Park, in the near El Paso, and extends to Chaparral to the east, spanning Doña Ana and Otero counties.

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