Keeping kids safe at Tri-Cities schools

Keeping kids safe at Tri-Cities schools »Play Video
TRI-CITIES, Wash. - Students are back in school across the Tri-Cities and there have been updates over the summer when it comes to security.

Concerns about school are different depending on who you talk to.
Jaiden Mishima is starting middle school.

He said, "I kinda feel nervous because I don't know if I will get my classes wrong or I'll be late for my first class."

Jaiden's dad worries about his safety.

"I wanted to ease his mind a little bit and luckily they're doing a little bit to help out with that, too," he said.

Teachers stood in front of Chief Joe Middle for the first day of classes in Richland. Along with them, security officers ready to guide students.
They are setting the standard for the rest of the year.

Steve Aagaard with the Richland school district said, "The police officers and security guards want to get to know the students so that the students feel comfortable talking to them."

Their hope is that the kids will report any suspicious activity, from fellow students or otherwise. This goes for schools around the Tri-Cities.

Kennewick is working to upgrade surveillance systems, with the ability to lock down schools. Pasco is looking at smart cams with lock out options as well.

Richland isn't far behind on the technology upgrades.

They have plans to amp up security at all the entrances of the elementary schools that are about to be remodeled. Taking measures that will provide an extra layer of protection.

Police will continue to patrol the elementary schools daily.
Security guards and student resource officers will roam the halls at the middle and high school levels.

That's works just fine for parents like William.

"You gotta have faith in your local law enforcement," he said.

Knowing those that care for your children are prepared for anything.

All districts also have emergency response plans in place ready to act if a disaster or dangerous event happens.

They practice evacuation and lock down drills on a regular basis.