Officers will be placed on all Abilene and Wylie school district campuses Friday, amid unsubstantiated threats on social media that a school attack could happen that day.
However, Police Chief Stan Standridge and Abilene ISD Superintendent Heath Burns said they want to assure parents they don’t believe there’s validity to the threats.
"Parents, I want you to hear me. I am absolutely committed to the safety of your children. We will strive to have an officer on every single one of these campuses so your campuses will be safe," said Standridge.
In fact, Standridge and Burns said they plan on sending their own children to school that day.
"My daughter will be in school Friday and I make that decision consciously and with a lot of preconsideration, but just hear my heart as a parent and as your chief of police I'm going to do everything I can to safeguard our children and that doesn't just stop on Friday," Standridge said.
The officials said a threatening Facebook post has been deleted, but not before circulating among students, who have continued to spread the rumor.
Students' online discussion over the Mayan calendar's prediction of the end of the world added to the concern, as did theories that there could be school shootings on that day.
The announcement was made during a 40-minute news conference that included AISD, Wylie ISD and Abilene police officials.
"We’re going to have to work through this because the reality is we can not afford to close down schools every time we perceive a threat," said Standridge.