Dear Neighbor, Gun violence in Austin increased by 47 percent in 2020, according to a report released last week by the Austin Police Department. There was a 69 percent spike in non-family aggravated assaults involving firearms, which is an indicator of violent crime trends. Gun violence in Austin is up 124 percent since 2015. Two weeks ago, the Austin… Read more »
The Greater Austin Crime Commission and University of Texas School of Social Work developed the Longhorn Leaders youth outreach program in cooperation with the university’s Athletic Department and the Austin Independent School District. The program is designed to communicate the importance of academic and personal success with middle school students. During the semester, each university student makes several personal presentations at each school, emphasizing academic excellence and life “success” skills.
IMPORTANCE OF ACADEMIC SUCCESS
The program is designed to communicate the importance of academic and personal success with middle school students. During the semester, each university athlete makes several personal presentations at each school, emphasizing academic excellence and life “success” skills.
The Longhorn Leaders program has generated an enthusiastic response from schools and has promoted positive community interaction between university athletes, students, parents, teachers, and law enforcement. The Greater Austin Crime Commission underwrites the costs of developing materials for the program, including trading cards for each athlete and a half-hour video documentary.
The program, created by Crime Commission board members Dr. Michael L. Lauderdale and Fred Ligarde, reaches seventh graders at a crucial developmental point, as decisions affect the transition into early adolescence. School failure, involvement with drugs, gangs, or other harmful activities, and delinquency begun in middle school often lead toschool dropout and discourage successful developmental transitions. Students at this age are susceptible to influences beyond the family, especially from peers and the popular media. The Longhorn Leaders program provides an alternative, positive message.
In the News
Dear Neighbor, After seven outside reviews and more than a year since the last cadet class started, Austin is ready to restart the police training academy. This Thursday, the Austin City Council will vote on a resolution (Item 37) to restart police cadet classes no later than June 7. The city manager provided an update and “blueprint” for a “reimagined cadet training academy” to the… Read more »
Dear Neighbor Austin is ready to restart police cadet classes. On March 25, the Austin City Council will consider a resolution that restarts the police training academy no later than June 7. In response to community concerns and city council direction, the Austin Police Department has overhauled recruiting and training. Restarting cadet classes is the best opportunity to change police culture… Read more »