Determined kids find ways to leave campus

Nov. 30—Ector County ISD juniors and seniors are allowed to leave campus for lunch, but some students who shouldn't leave find a way.

At about 1:12 p.m. Monday, the Odessa Police Department responded to Medical Center Hospital in reference to a knife victim. The investigation revealed that after an altercation occurred in the 1900 block of East 42nd Street, a 14-year-old male sustained non life-threatening injuries from a stab wound.

According to a Facebook post, there were no reports of other injuries, repeated calls to the Odessa Police Department were not returned Wednesday for information on the stabbing. Anyone with information regarding this incident is encouraged to contact OPD at 432-333-3461 or Odessa Crime Stoppers at 432-333-TIPS and reference case #22-0017552.

Mike Adkins, chief communications officer for ECISD, said Permian and Odessa high school freshmen and sophomores should not be off campus.

Both schools have almost 4,000 students.

"The unfortunate truth is they do skip sometimes. ... If they are intent on doing that they often ways to do it and they know how to go about it," Adkins said.

The schools are "diligent" about watching those areas and there are schedules where teachers, administrators and staff members are watching to see if students appear to be leaving from an area where they're not supposed to.

Both schools have four ECISD police officers each and the schools are large and have many entrances and exits.

Freshmen and sophomores that are seen leaving are asked why and where they're going. There are also monitors in the parking lots.

But Adkins said those are difficult to cover and they don't have the manpower to do it. The hallways are swept as well once classes have started.

"The unfortunate truth is kids, when they're determined to get off campus, they find a way to get off campus," Adkins said.

There are more than 2,000 juniors and seniors that can go to Subway, Burger King and Taco Villa during lunch as they are near Permian.

The same number can leave OHS.

Students should be wearing their badges at all times where you can see them and identify the student quickly, he said.

When students are found to be skipping school, parents are contacted to find out why and the expectation that they need to be in school is set.

Asked about closing the high school campuses during lunch, Adkins said it's been discussed but students don't want it and some parents resist also.

He added that it has been brought up in the past and it wouldn't surprise him if it's brought up in the future.

Logistically, it would be difficult for the cafeterias at OHS and PHS to handle the number of students if they were not allowed to leave.

"They're old buildings that are very big and added on to over the years. It's a difficult task to monitor the kids as they come and go between classes. ... It's a struggle," Adkins said.