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School steps up in wake of tragedy

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Prayer around the flagpole - COCISD students and community members gathered around the LJH flagpole on Wednesday morning before school started to pray for the Uvalde community, all schools, and the nation. Courtesy photoPrayer around the flagpole - COCISD students and community members gathered around the LJH flagpole on Wednesday morning before school started to pray for the Uvalde community, all schools, and the nation. Courtesy photo

Special to the News-Times

COLDSPRING — The horrible news of the devastation at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde on May 25 sent a shockwave through the COCISD community, as it did through every community across the country. 

It didn’t seem possible that such darkness could enter a children’s classroom at all, much less during joyful end-of-the-year celebrations. It was a shock. And then it was a mobilization.

Immediately, individuals were reaching out to see what they could do, how they could help. People both near and far showed up in Uvalde to donate blood, serve meals, comfort the comfortless, and to pay their respects. Many are still there and will remain for the hard days, weeks and months to come.

The COCISD community came together to pray. Students, families and community members gathered around campus flagpoles before school started on Wednesday morning to pray for the families affected, our schools, and the nation.

COCISD made sure its already stringent security measures were effectively in place, and increased security through the end of the school year. And out of respect for the lives lost, put on hold posting its own happy end-of-the-year photos to social media until a more appropriate time.

Superintendent Dr. Bryan Taulton sent the following message to COCISD staff and the community:

“I send this message filled with emotion and simply at a loss for words due to the senseless shooting tragedy that occurred at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas that took the innocent and precious lives of 19 students and two of our dedicated colleagues. Please keep the families of the victims and those who were injured in this devastating incident in your thoughts and prayers.

Safety and security are our utmost priority, and I will continue to work with Chief Dean and the campus administrators to review our emergency operations procedures and protocols to ensure that we are doing everything possible to keep our students and staff safe. Most importantly, as a school community, we will continue to remain steadfast, vigilant, and dedicated to maintaining schools that are safe and secure. We can do this by ensuring adequate supervision, limiting points of entry to our schools, double-checking to make sure that gates are locked/doors are secure, and reporting any threatening/suspicious behavior(s) of anyone within our school community immediately to the campus police officer and administration. 

Additional safety measures will be in place as we wrap up the school year.

As a united school community let us lift up Uvalde ISD in prayer.

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