A Message from Superintendent Roher

February 15, 2018

We are all heartbroken over the recent events in Florida.  All of us immediately question the possibility of a brutal attack like this in our community.  I want you to know Friendswood ISD takes the safety and security of our staff and children very seriously.

There is not one single action or procedure that provides safety.  In Friendswood, we believe safety programs need to be in layers so that there are multiple procedures, communications, or infrastructure which prevents or helps us act quickly to prevent harm.  One of the strongest layers we have is the relationship between the Friendswood Police Department and FISD.  We have two School Resource Officers in FISD, but much more than that we meet monthly to discuss issues related to safety and security and to coordinate our responses to any action.  We share a radio frequency with FPD to enhance communication.  We also partner with them on tabletop drills to review scenarios like the one in Florida as well as live drills in our schools during the summer months when students are home.

There are also several layers of training in our Emergency Operations Plan that is provided each year such as identifying strangers on campus and reacting to an armed intruder with our “Run, Hide, Fight”.  Infrastructure is another important layer.  Campuses all have security vestibules for entry, electronic door locking mechanisms including automatic lockdown capabilities, security cameras in every facility and on the buses, and other pieces of equipment intended to get authorities to the campuses quickly in case of a large-scale event.  The FISD website https://myfisd.com/safety/ provides much information on other safety layers.

One of the most important layers is the voice of our parents and students.  We have such an involved community of parents.  If you see or witness something that doesn’t appear to be in the right place or an action by a person that makes you question motives, please say something — either to the authorities or to the campus staff immediately.  The same goes for social media.  If you see something on your own child’s phone or on a phone of one of his/her friends that concerns you get a screenshot for either the police or for the school district to see.   Our students do not want this type of behavior on their campuses either.  Encourage them to report to the administration about anything or anyone they feel to be unsafe – especially what they see on social media.  Speak with them about the positives of being responsible for taking actions to provide a safe environment for themselves and their classmates.

Thank you for all you do to make this community and our schools safe.  We must continue to team together to keep them safe, engaging learning environment we want at Friendswood ISD.

Thad Roher