Schools prep for increased security in wake of Texas shooting

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With just a few days left in the school year, several area school systems are tightening security in response to the school shooting in Santa Fe, Texas.

Local law enforcement agencies in Polk, Pinellas, Pasco, and Hillsborough counties said they are increasing their presence at every county school.

“I always want to be blamed for overdoing it rather than under-doing it,” said Grady Judd, the Polk County sheriff.

In a news conference Friday, Judd said he will be adding school resource officers to every school. Many middle and high schools already have them, but most elementary schools did not. 

This move will add at least one SRO to all 111 elementary schools, and ban backpacks on campus for the last few days of school.

In Hillsborough County, the sheriff's office will be providing a deputy for all schools in unincorporated areas. The Tampa Police Department said it will increase its presence at schools within the city limits.

“We must always be ready to react and adapt when something horrific confronts us without notice,” said Chad Chronister, the Hillsborough County sheriff.

Pasco and Manatee school officials say there will be a heavy law enforcement presence for the final days of school. 

Parents said these extra efforts are necessary.

“I mean granted we only have a week left but I do just think it’s something we need,” said Danny Schumacher, “unfortunately it’s how we live.”