Police officers and sheriff's deputies in Hillsborough County manned elementary school campuses countywide this morning, in the wake of the tragedy in Connecticut. The move is costing millions of dollars in the hopes of making parents and children feel safer in class.
At Phillip Shore Elementary in Ybor City, they were greeted by Tampa Police Officer Brian Alofs. Principal Barbara Mercer says since the beefed up security has been in place, reaction from parents has been positive. "Parents were very much relieved, they all commented on how pleased they were that TPD was there to support us." Mercer said. "And they felt better about bringing their kids to school. I was a little worried about attendance, right after what happened in Connecticut, but the parents, once they knew TPD was here, the kids came. "
But some felt the increased security was overkill. Roberta Shelor was one of those parents. "It's something I'm on the fence about." Shelor said. "Because, while I do like the influence of having the law enforcement people here, making the children feel comfortable about law enforcement in the community, I don't find it to be something that I need as far as security goes. " Tanya Mason agreed.
"Honestly, I didn't think it was a big necessity at Phillip Shore, because so far we haven't had any issues. My daughter's been going here four years and I haven't had any concerns. "
The increased security will remain in place until the end of the school year, and is costing taxpayers more than 2 million dollars.
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