Drug detecting dogs will return to Derby Schools

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DERBY, Kan. (KAKE) -

K9 drug dog searches will return to three Derby schools this academic year.

"This is a prevention effort. It's not a 'I want to get your kid. I want to see your kid arrested.'  That's not what this is about. This is about keeping it out of our schools," said Matt Liston, the District Safety and Security Officer for Derby Schools. 

Derby Schools will rejoin area schools that are using K9 to detect drugs.

"I talked to El Dorado, Mulvane, Shawnee Mission schools in Kansas City," said Liston. "It's pretty standard for most schools that are doing k9 searches. we're not reinventing the wheel."

Results from the Spring 2019 Safety and Security Survey showed secondary students, staff, and parents expressed the need for more drug, alcohol and tobacco awareness and prevention in schools.

This academic year, K9 drug searches will occur at least once per semester at Derby Middle, Derby North Middle, and Derby High School.

"More than likely, the students will never even see the dogs because they'll be in a hold. We'll bring the dogs through, take the dogs back out of the hallway. We'll release the hold and those kids will be able to come back into the hallway," said Liston.

The searches will be unannounced and the K9 will sniff through lockers and backpacks for drugs, including vaping products with THC.

The Kansas Highway Patrol K9 unit will partner with Derby Schools.

This week, the district sent this message to parents:

The following message is from Matt Liston, District Safety Security Officer for Derby Public Schools. 

I would like to make you aware of drug prevention strategies and initiatives planned to be implemented during the 2019-2020 school year. As a part of this effort, we will be holding K9 drug dog searches at Derby Middle School, Derby North Middle School and Derby High School at various times throughout the school year beginning this semester. This is a prevention effort to help keep drugs out of our schools. 

Thank you for your support in helping us keep our schools safe.