September 30, 2023
  • 3:35 pm Ma’Rico: Here are my Week Six top matchups and predictions
  • 4:35 pm Bailey County Senior Center to host vaccination clinic on Friday
  • 4:34 pm Special guests enhance learning during Hispanic Heritage Month
  • 4:32 pm Muleshoe Area Medical Center continues with repairs, old nursing home removal
  • 4:30 pm Week Five recap: Lockney, Sudan, Floydada earn big wins

There was a time when School Safety Administrator was not considered a necessary position at smaller schools. 

But, in the wake of events like the 2018 school shooting at Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas, in which 10 people were fatally shot and 13 others wounded, the necessity for School Safety Administrators like David Vela has become increasingly obvious. 

An alumnus of MHS, Vela grew up in Muleshoe and returned here after retiring from service in the U.S. Army. 

“The shooting at Santa Fe High School was the most devastating at the time,” Vela said. “Mike Morath, the State Commissioner of Education, saw the need to put safety programs, like the Guardian program, in place.” 

In 2018, Superintendent Dr. R.L. Richards and the Board of Trustees offered Vela the job of School Safety Administrator at MISD. He accepted the position and received special training. 

Because human beings need to feel secure in order to function, communities often fall into the mentality of “It can’t happen here.” 

“That was one of our priorities,” Vela said. “It’s hard to change that mentality, but we’re not immune to anything. The same thing can happen in a 3A school that can happen in a Division 1 school. We have to have that perspective. 

“Those shifts and changes can be a little bit troublesome or monotonous, but the staff, the teachers, the administration, everybody has been amazing with the changes. They know it’s all about the kiddos, all about keeping the school safe, the environment safe and the school culture safe.” 

Technology has come into play in order to keep Muleshoe schools safe. 

“From 2018 to now the change is dramatic,” Vela said. “MISD has become safer more than ever because of protocols. The use of cameras and controlled access doors are some of different safety elements. We employ a multi-faceted operations plan to bring all that together. 

“We don’t do this alone Dr. Richards and the board provide things for us, and we make changes.” 

Emergency communications with parents and students are also vital. 

“We keep in contact by using emergency communications,” he said. “Parents, teachers and students can use social media or go to our website. Thrillshare is a phone app that we use to communicate with all the parents. We can send them a direct notification.” 

In the end, Vela said, “Our job is to teach and instruct students to prepare them for real world, and we have to do that in a safe environment. We’re always building- it’s crucial to the school process. 

“We have to stay vigilant.” 




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