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Tangipahoa Parish putting in NFL-style security for high school games | #schoolsaftey


TANGIPAHOA PARISH, La. — There have been fatal shootings at football games in both Washington Parish last year, and West Baton Rouge Parish just days ago.  Now the Tangipahoa school system is being proactive, and taking extra safety precautions. 

If you’re planning to hit the Friday night lights in Tangipahoa Parish this football season, you’ll notice something different. The parish school board posted a notice on social media outlining the new security measures at football games, and other school athletic events.

 TANGIPAHOA HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL GAME SECURITY

  • SECURITY WANDS
  • CLEAR BAG, PURSES
  • SIZE OF GALLON FREEZER BAG
  • CLUTCH, SIZE OF HAND
  • DIAPER BAGS INSPECTED
  • NO: BACKPACKS, LARGE PURSES, TOTES, NON-CLEAR BAGS

 Trained security will use a wand on all spectators at every entrance. Bags and purses must be clear, and no larger than a gallon-sized freezer bag. Small clutches must be the size of a hand. You may not bring in backpacks, large purses, totes, and non-clear bags. Diaper bags will be allowed, but will be inspected.  

“Certainly, you know, there have been a time or two where we found people with guns on campus, during these events. It hasn’t been a regular occurrence,” explained Tangipahoa Sheriff Daniel Edwards.

Sheriff Edwards says this is an added layer of security from the school board, to what sheriff’s deputies have been doing for many years. School resource officers have been at schools, and reserve officers at games and events. His specially-trained mounted officers have that bird’s-eye view to deter and deescalate. 

“A lot of times these would not be a one-on-one, you know, fight, so to speak. If you just let them develop, you could literally have 10 against 10, or 20 against five. You know these things could really get out of hand,” added Sheriff Edwards.

One mother, who didn’t want to go on camera, said she has children who are recent graduates of the Tangipahoa public school system, and she thinks this is a great new policy, that it should have been implemented long ago. It’s her opinion that the children are becoming more aggressive, and that they believe the way to settle a conflict is with a gun.

Other parents and grandparents in the carpool line agree.

“I do agree with it. My grandson was here when they graduated. Remember the shooting at the graduation? And I would have felt a whole lot better if there had been something like that there to keep him safe,” said a Hammond High student’s grandmother.

“I really do think it’s a great idea. Makes me feel more safe about my kids, and the whole community, the school.  It’s much needed,” said a Hammond High student’s mother, who also talked about the graduation shooting.

School Superintendent Melissa Stilley did not return our calls for comment.

If you have questions, contact the school administration at [email protected]



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