Campus monitors help build safe schools

With the safety and well-being of students and team members in mind, Dallas ISD has deployed a team of campus monitors across the district as part of a series of enhanced security measures. 

The monitors have been deployed throughout the district with an emphasis on secondary schools, although some are working at larger elementary schools as well. Their main responsibilities include securing entry and exit doors, monitoring entryway metal detectors, and overseeing hallways, cafeterias, and more to enhance the safety of the community. 

“The more eyes we have on access and exit points, the more eyes we have looking at the people coming toward our buildings, and the safer our schools are going to be,” said William Jay Sheets, supervisor of Student Services.

The campus monitors’ scope is the entire school, he said. They are trained in technical safety skills, as well as in de-escalation and relationship building, with an overarching goal of creating a positive learning environment for all.

“Campus monitors, along with administration and other faculty and staff, help build the school culture so students will want to come to school every day,” Sheets said. “They get students safely where they need to be.”

One campus monitor that Sheets worked with during a recent training session shared a story of speaking with a student he had known for some time in the hallway. The student expressed that they were having thoughts of self-harm, so the campus monitor got in touch with the campus’ administration team and counselors. Sheets said this group was “instrumental” in keeping the student safe that day.

This situation is far from the only success story the campus monitors had to share during their recent training, he said. 

“Safety doesn’t fall on any one individual or department,” Sheets said. “It’s a collaborative effort between our campus monitors, our support staff, our teachers, our resource officers, campus administration, and even our students. All of them combined keep campuses safe.”

Due to the importance of the campus monitor role, extensive training is being provided to these individuals to give them the tools they need to be successful and assist them with helping campuses be safe places for all students and team members. Training was held prior to the start of school and will be ongoing throughout the year with a focus on roles, responsibilities, de-escalation, safety, and culture/climate.

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