In the wake of Tuesday’s deadly shooting inside a Uvalde elementary school, in which a gunman killed 19 students and two teachers, a Texas sheriff is calling on all local school districts in his county to implement a school marshal program “immediately.”
“Due to historical and recent events, the time has come in which we must place the safety of our children and school faculty as priority number 1,” Bosque County Sheriff Trace Hendricks began in a letter to local school officials:
I feel it is time to take aggressive and deliberate steps toward the enhancement of our security measures in order to better protect the lives of our students and faculty. We must insure that our schools and the lives of our loved ones are as safe and secure as possible and that none are designated as a “soft target.”
As Sheriff of Bosque County, I am at this time calling upon all Bosque County School Districts, all school boards and Administrative staff, to initiate and implement the School Marshal Program. I encourage, urge, and request that this program be initiated immediately and without delay as it is my hope that training and program guidelines be in place for the beginning of the 2022 school year.
Texas passed a law in 2013 allowing public school districts and open enrollment charter schools to appoint school marshals, whose sole purpose is to prevent murder or serious bodily injury on school premises.
Marshals must complete an 80-hour training course, conducted by a law enforcement academy specifically prepared to provide the school marshal curriculum.
On Wednesday, Hendricks posted on Facebook that his letter “will be addressed to the board president and superintendent of each Bosque County school and will be hand delivered by a deputy today.”
“It is time,” he added.