El Paso Schools Fear Cartels Are Targeting Students

POSTED: Tuesday, January 5, 2010 - 8:18am

UPDATED: Wednesday, February 17, 2010 - 3:26pm

Some schools in the Borderland schools are beefing up security on campus.

The fear is that drug cartels could be target students who are now attending high school on this side of the border.

Administrators from all local school districts recently attended a conference dealing with the possibility that drug cartels could be targeting students who've recently moved from Juarez.

These days, more and more families from Juarez are fleeing to El Paso to escape the drug violence.

The worry is that some of those families, along with their children, are fleeing because they are the targets of the violence.

That has school administrators taking action to prevent any type of "cartel" hit from happening on their campuses.

We spoke with the director of Region 19, the organization that advises and trains administrators and staff from all districts in El Paso County.

It was at one of Region 19's recent meetings with the districts that the issue of cartel-related violence in school came up.

"When I started teaching in school I never thought I'd be dealing with issues like this, where you have to have armed security and armed police on campus or worrying about somebody doing a hit in a school. Like coming into a cafeteria and injuring some children," said Jimmy Vasquez, the Executive Director of Region 19.

Since the meeting, security measures at some local schools have changed a bit.

But the specifics aren't being made public.

All this may sound alarming if you're a parent, but there's really no reason to panic.

It's all being done in effort to prevent something bad from happening at your child's school in the first place.

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